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Uf.icoiiBfTfnj Edition 

Volume Nine 


Two Hundred and Fifty copies of the Beaconsfield 
Edition of Edmund Burke's Works have been 
printed for Canada, of which this is No 





^-.■^l ., ; 

Thr- Right Honours hi, ! fun en Hast in 

• painted in In,lij, |,y TiiK K-ti 
I'orrrait i'.iX'u-n 

in thr N'jtionj! 





lAlilT!?fGS AND speeches; 




The Writings ^ Speeches of 



ESQUIRE • SPEECHES //; th.- 1 M 1" !■ ACU M KN 1 

t- COMPANY, Limned • M D CCCC I 




\ /• 






AmTioLBS or Charob or Hiou Crinb!) &kd Misobmbanohs 


MONB IN Apbil and Mat, 1786. — Abticlbs VII.- XXII 

Abt.ATI. Contbaots ... 

VIII. Prbsbnts 

IX. Bbbionation or thb OrricB or Gotrbrob- 

Gbnrral .... 
X. Subobon-Gbnbral'b Contract 
XI. Contracts roR Poolbcmdy RF'-i.iSg 
XII. Contracts roR Ofium . 
XIII Appointment of R. J. Sclivan 
XIV. Ranna or GoBDD . . 
XV. Revrnubs. Part I. ... 

Part II 

XVI. Misobmbanors in Oddb . 

XVII. Mahomed Reza KniN 

XVIII. The Moocl delivered up to the Maiirat- 


XIX. Libel on the Codri of Dirbctobs 
XX. Mahratta War and Pbacb . 


XXII. FrzooLA KhIn. 

Part I. Rights op Ftzoola KhXn, etc., bb 










TuATT o» Lall-Dajio . . • • 

Pabt UL Gca«ahtt Of TH« Tbiatt of Ull- 

Pabt IV. Thaum of th» Boabd to Ftiooi.a 

Pa«t V. Dbmaitd of Fivb Thocsaito Homb 
Pa«t VL Tbiatt of Chomab . • • • 
Pabt VII. Coii»«qobwck» of thb Tbbatt of 


Pabt VIII. Pbodhiabt CominTATioB of tm 

Pabt DC lfDi,i.Viin>icATioii ofFtzoola KhXb 

BT BIajob Palmib akd Mb. Hawiho* . 
Armmix to thb Eighth and Sixtebhtb Cbaboii 








Spbborbs w thb Impbachmbkt of Wabbbb Hawibo*. 
EsQuiRB, latb Gotbrnob-Gbicbbal of Bbboal 
Sfbbcb iw Opbiiiho tbb Impbachmbkt. 

Fibst Day: Fbidat, Fbbrdabt 15, 1788 . . «» 
Sboowo Dat: Satobdat. Fbbboabt 16. »>* 



The Right Honourable Warren Hastings . . Frontispiece 

Vtom • picture pointed 1 1 lodis, by Tilly Kettle, now in tlie 
National Portrait Gallery. 

Edmund Burke Engraved Title 

From the painting by George Bomney. 
Sir Eyre Coote, K.B Page 177 

From a picture in the National Portrait Gallery by an un- 
known painter. 

Edward Hovell, First Baron Thurlow .... "329 

From a picture painted in 180S, by Tbomaa Pbillipi, B.A., in 
the National Portrait Gallery. 



1 1 












.! , 




ixtm oovKBJios-oiuiBnAL or sMiaAk 




THAT the Court of Directors of the East ^ndia 
Company had laid down the following fundamen- 
tal rules for the conduct of such of the Company'a 
business in Bengal as could be pvi-formed by contract, 
and had repeatedly and strictly ordered the Governor 
and Council of Fort William to observe those rules, 
viz. : That all contracts should be publicly adver- 
tised , and the most reasonable proposals accepted ; 
that the contracts of provisions, and for furnishing 
draught and carriage bulloclcs for the army, should 
bo annual; and that they should not fail to advortiso 
for and receive proposals for those contracts everi/ 

That the said Warren Hastings, in direct disobedi- 
ence to the said positive orders, and, as the Directors 
themselves say, by a most deliberate breach of his duty, 
did, in September, 1777, accept of proposals ortered 
by Ernest Alexander Johnson for providing draught 
and carriage bullocks, and for victualling the Euro- 
peans, without advertising for proposals, as he was 
expressly com aanded to do, and extended tlie con- 
tract for three years, which was positively ordered to 


, %\ 


i M 


be annual, — aad, notwithstanding that extension of 
the period, which ought at least to have been compen. 
sated by some advantage to the Company in the con- 
ditions, did conclude the said contract upon terms 
less advantageous than the preceding contract, and there- 
fore not on the lowest terms procurable. That the said 
Warren Hastings, in defiance of the judgment and 
lawful orders of his superiors, which in this case left 
him no option, declared, that Ae disapproved of puiUsh- 
ing for proposals, and that the contract was reduced too 
low already: thereby avowing himself the advocate of 
the contractor, against whom, as representative of the 
Company, and guardian of their interests, he prop- 
erly was party, and preferring the advantage of the 
contractor to those of his own constituents and em- 
ployers. That the Court of Directors of the East In- 
dia Company, having carefully considered the circum- 
stances and tendency of this transaction, condemned 
it in the strongest terms, declaring, that they would 
not permit the contract to be continued, and that, " if 
the contractor should think himself aggrieved, and 
take measures in consequence by which the Compa- 
ny became involved in loss or damage, they should 
certainly hold the majority of the Council responsi- 
ble for such loss or damage, and proceed against 
them accordingly." — That the said Warren Hast- 
ings, in defiance of orders, which the Directors say 
were plain and unequivocal, did, in January, 1777, 
receive from George Templer a proposal essentially 
different from the advertisement published by the 
Governor-General and Council for receiving proposals 
for feeding the Company's elephants, and did accept 
thereof, not only without having recourse to the proper 
means for ascertaining whether the said proposal was 



the lowest that would be offered, but with another 
actually before the board nearly thirty per cent lower 
than that made by the said George Templer, to whom 
the said Warren Hastings granted a contract, in the 
terms proposed by the said Templer, for three years, 
and did afterwards extend the same to five years, with 
new and distinct conditions, accepted by the said War- 
ren Hastings, without advertising for fresh proposals, 
by which the Company were very considerable losers : 
on all which the Court of Directors declared, " that 
this waste of their property could not be permitted ; 
that he, the said Warren Hastings, had disregarded 
their authority, and disobeyed their orders, in not tak- 
ing the lowest offers" ; and they ordered that the con- 
tract for elephants should be annulled : and the said 
Directors further declared, that, " if the contractor 
should recover damages of the Company for breach 
of engagement, they were determined, in such case, 
to institute a suit at law against those members of the 
board who had presumed, in direct breach of their or- 
ders, to prefer the interest of an individual to that 
of the Company." — That the said Warren Hastings 

did, in the year 1777, conclude with Forde 

a contract for an armed vessel for the pilotage of the 
Chittagong river, and for the defence of the coast 
and river against the incursions of robbers, for the 
term of five years, in further disobedience of the 
Company's orders respecting the mode and duration 
of contracts, and with a considerable increase of ex- 
pense to the Company. That the farming out the de- 
fence of a country to a contractor, being wholly un- 
precedented, and evidently absurd, could have no real 
object but to enrich the contractor at the Company's 
expense : since either the service was not dangerous. 











i ^ 


and then the establishment was totally unnecessary, 
or, if it was a dangerous service, it was evidently the 
interest of the contractor to avoid such danger, and 
not to hazard the loss of his ship or men, which must 
be replaced at his own expense, and therefore that an 
active and faithful discharge of the contractor's duty 
was incompatible with his interest. — That the said 
Warren Hastings, in further defiance of the Compa- 
ny's orders, and in breach of the established rule 
of their service, did, in the year 1777, conclude a 
contract with the master and deputy master attendant 
of the Company's marine or pilot service, for supply- 
ing the said marine with naval stores, and executing 
the said service for the term of two years, and with- 
out advertising for proposals. That the use and ex- 
penditure of such stores and the direction of the pilot 
vessels are under the management and at the disposi- 
tion of the master attendant by virtue of his office ; 
that he is officially the proper and regular check upon 
the person who furnishes the stores, and bound by his 
duty to take care that all contracts for furnishing 
such stores are duly and faithfully executed. That 
the said Warren Hastings, by uniting the supply and 
the check in the same hands, did not only disobey 
the Company's specific orders, and violate the funda- 
mental rules and practice of the service, but did over- 
set the only just and rational principle on which this 
and every other service of a similar nature ought to 
be conducted, and did not only sulrject the Company's 
interest, in point of expense, to fraud and collusion, 
but did thereby expose tlie navigation of the Bengal 
river to manifest hazard and distress : considering 
that it is the duty of the master attendant to take 
care that the pilot vessels are constantly stationed in 


tT d roads to wait the arrival of the Company's ships, 
especially in tempestuous weather, and that they 
should be in a constant condition to keep the sea; 
whereas it is manifestly the interest of the contractor, 
in the first instance, to equip the said vessels as scant- 
ily as possible, and afterwards to expose them as lit- 
tle as possible to any service in which the stores to be 
replaced by him might be lost or consumed. And, 
finally, that in June, 1779, the said contract was 
prolonged to the said master attendant, by the said 
Warren Hastings, for the further period of two years 
from the expiration of the first, without advertising 
for proposals. — That it does not appear that any jf 
the preceding contracts have been annulled, or the 
charges attending any of them abated, or that the 
Court of Directors have ever taken any measures to 
compel the said Warren Hastings to indemnify the 
Company, or to make good any part of the loss in- 
curred by the said contracts. 

That in the year 1777 the said Warren Hastings 
did recommend and appoint John Belli, at that time 
his private secretary, to be agent for supplying th^^ 
garrison of Fort William with victualling stores ; 
that the stores were to be purchased with money ad- 
vanced by the Company, and that the said agent was 
to be allowed a commission or percentage for his risk 
and trouble ; that, in order to ascertain what sum 
would be a reasonable compensation for the agent, the 
Governor-General and Council agreed to consult some 
of the principal merchants of Calcutta ; that the mer- 
c nts so consulted reported their opinion, that twen- 
ty p^r cent on the prime cost of the stores would be 
a reasonable compensation to the agent ; that, never- 
theless, the said Warren Hastings, supported by the 



, \ 

H ' ' 




t ,fc W. 


vote and cononrreii^e of Richard Barwell, then a mem- 
ber of the Supreme Council, did propose and carry it, 
that thirty per cent per annum should be allowed up- 
on all stores to be provided by the agent. That the 
said Warren Hastings professed that "he preferred 
an agency to a contract for this service, because, if it 
were performed by contract, it must then be adver- 
tised, and the world would know what provision was 
made for the defence of the fort " : as if its being 
publicly known that the fort was well provided for de- 
fence were likely to encourage an enemy to attack 
it. That in August, 1779, in defiance of the principle 
laid down by himself for preferring an agency to a 
contract, the said "Warren Hastings did propose and 
carry it, that the agency should be converted into a 
contract, to be granted to the said John Belli, without 
advertising for proposals, and fixed for the term of 
five years, — "pretending that he had received fre- 
quent remonstrances from the said agent concerning 
the heavy losses and inconveniences to which he was 
subjected by the indefinite terms of his agency," not- 
withstanding it appeared by evidence produced at the 
board, that, on a supply of about 37,000^, he had al- 
ready drawn a commission of 22,000Z. and upwards. 
That the said Warren Hastings pledged himself, that, 
if required ly the Court i^^ Directors, the profits arising 
from the agency should he paid into the Company's 
treasury, and appropriated as the Court \ould direct. 
That the Court of Directors, as soon as they were 
advised of the first appointment of the said agency, 
declared that they considered the commission of 
twenty per cent as an ample compensation to the 
agent, and did positively order, that, according to the 
engagement of the said Warren Hastings, " the com- 

! ! i 


mission paid or to be paid to tlie said agent should be 
reduced to twenty pounds per cent." That the said 
John Belli did positively refuse to refund any part of 
the profits he had received, or to submit to a diminu- 
tion of those which he was still to receive ; and that 
the said Warren Hastings has never made good his 
own voluntary and solemn engagement to the Court 
of Directors hereinabove mentioned : and as his fail- 
ure to perform the said engagement is a breach of faith 
to the Company, so his performance of such engage- 
ment, if he had performed it, and even his oflFering to 
pledge himself for the agent, in the first instance, 
ought to be taken as presumptive evidence of a con- 
nection between the said Warren Has ngs and the 
fjaid agent, his private secretary, whi ght not to 

exist between a Governor acting in be )f the Com- 
pany and a contracto. making terms wni such Gov- 
ernor for the execution of a public service. 

That, before the expiration of the contract herein- 
before mentioned for supplying the army with draught 
and carriage bullocks, granted by the said Warren 
Hastings to Ernest Alexander Johnson for three years, 
the said Warren Hastings did propose and carry it in 
Council, that a new contract sliould be made on a 
new plan, and that an ofifer thereof sho'ild be made to 
Richr '^hnson, brother and executor of the said 
cont' vrithout advertising for proposals, for the 

term «. j.^e. years ; thai uiis offer was voluntarily ac- 
cepted by the said Richard Johnson, who at the same 
time desired and obtained that the new contracts 
should be made out in the name of Charles Croftes, 
the Company's accountant and sub-treasurer at Fort 
William ; that the said Charles Croftes offered the 
said Richard Johnson as one of his securities for the 


1 I 




performance of the said contract, who was accepted 
as such by the said Warren Hastings ; and that, at 
the request of the said contractor, the contract for 
victualling the Europeans serving at the Presidency 
was added to and uiuted with that for furnishing bul- 
locks, and fixed for the same period. That this ex- 
tension of the periods of the said contracts was not 
compensated by a diminution in the charge to be 
incurred by the Company on that account, as it 
ought to have been, but, on the contrary, the charge 
was immoderately increased by the now contracts, 
insomucL that it was proved by statements and com- 
putations produced at the board, that the increase on 
the victualling contract would in five years amount 
to 40,000Z., and that the increase on the bullock con- 
tract in the same period would amount to above 
400,000Z. That, when this and many other weighty 
objections against the terms of the said contracts 
were urged in Council to the said Warren Hastings, 
he declared that he should deliver a reply thereto ; but 
it does not appear that he did ever deliver such re- 
ply, or ever enter into a justification of any part of 
his conduct in this transaction. — That the act of 
Parliament of 1773, by which the first Governor-Gen- 
eral and Council were appointed, did expressly limit 
the duration of their office to the term of five years, 
which expired in October, 1779, and that the several 
contracts hereinbefore mentioned were granted in 
September, 1779, and were made to continue five 
years after the expiration of the government by which 
they were granted. That by this anticipation the dis- 
cretion and judgment of the succeeding government 
respecting the subject-matter of such contracts was 
taken away, and any correction or improvement there- 



J T A-^.^ 



in rendered impracticable. That the said Warron 
Hastings might have been justified by the rules and 
practice or by the necessity of the public service in 
binding the government by engagements to endure 
one year after the expiration of his own office ; but 
on no principles could he be justified in extending 
such engagements beyond the term of one year, much 
less on the principles he has avowed, namely, " that it 
was only an act of common justice in him to secure 
tvery man connected with him, as far as he legally 
could, from the apprehension of future oppression." 
That the oppression to which such apprehension, \ 
real, must allude, could only consist in and arise out 
of the obedience which he feared a future govern- 
ment might pay to the orders of the Court of Direc- 
tors, by making all contracts annual, and advertising 
for proposals publicly and indifferently from all per- 
sons whatever, by which it might happen that such 
beneficial cont. acts would not be constantly held by 
men connected with him, the said Warren Hastings. 
That this declaration, made by the said Warren Hast- 
ings, combined with all the circumstances belonging 
to these transactions, leaves no room to doubt, that, in 
disobeying the Company's orders, and betraying the 
trust reposed in him as guardian of the Company's 
property, his object was to purchase the attachment 
of a number of individuals, and to form a party capa- 
ble of supporting and protecting him in return. 

That, with the same view, and on tlie same prin- 
ciples, it appears that excessive salaries and emolu- 
ments, at the East India Company's charge and ex- 
pense, have been lavished by the said Warren Hast- 
ings to sundry individuals, contrary to the general 
principles of his duty, and in direct contradiction to 





I ? '^ 



the positive orders of the Court of Directors : partic- 
ularly, that, whereas by a resolution of the Court of 
Proprietors of the East India Company, and by an in- 
struction of the Court of Directors, it was jyovided 
and expressly ordered that there should be paid to 
the late Sir John Clavering " the sum of six thou- 
sand pounds sterling per annum in full for his services 
as commander-in-chief, in lieu of travelling charges 
and of all other advantages and emoluments what- 
ever," and whereas the Court of Directors positively 
ordered that the late " Sir Eyre Coote should receive 
the same pay as commander-in-chief of tlieir forces 
in India as was received by Lieutenant-General Sir 
John Clavering," the said Warren Hastings, nev- 
ertheless, within a very short time after Sir Eyre 
Coote's arrival in Bengal, did propose and carry it 
in Council, that a new establishment should be cre- 
ated for Sir Eyre Coote, by which an increase of ex- 
pense would be incurred by the India Company to 
the amount of eighteen thousand pounds a year and 
upwards, exclusive of and in addition to his salary 
of ten thousand pounds a year, provided for him by 
act of Parliament as a member of the Supreme 
Council, and exclusive of and in addition to his sal- 
ary of six thousand pounds a year as commander-in- 
chief, appointed for him by the Company, and ex- 
pressly fixed to that amount. 

Tliat the disobedience and breach of trust of which 
the said Warr'^n Hastings was guilty in this transac- 
tion is highly aggravated by the following circum- 
stances connected with it. That from the death of 
Sir John Clavering to the arrival of Sir Eyre Coote in 
Bengal the provisional command of the army had de- 
volved to and been vested in Brigadier-General Giles 



Stibbert, the eldest officer on that establishment. 
That in this capacity, and, an the said Warren Hast- 
ings has declared, " standing no way distinguished 
from the other officers ui the army, but by his acci- 
dental succession to the first place on the list," he, 
the said Giles Stibbert, had, by the recommendation 
and procurement of the said Warren Hastings, re- 
ceived and enjoyed a salary, and other allowances, to 
the amount of l^.ZSil. 12«. per annum. That Sir 
Eyre Coot3, soon after his arrival, represented to tho 
board that a considerable part of those allowances, 
amounting to 8,220^. 108. per annum, ought to de- 
volve to himself, as commander-in-chief of the Com- 
pany's forces in India, and, stating that the said Giles 
Stibbert could no longer be considered as command- 
er-in-chief under the Presidency of Fort William, 
made a formal demand of the same. That the said 
Warren Hastings, instead of reducing the allowances 
of the said Giles Stibbert to the establishment at 
which they stood during General Clavering's com- 
mand, and for the continuance of which after Sir 
Eyre Coote's arrival there could be no pretence, con- 
tinued the allowances of 13,854^ 128. per annum to 
the said Giles Stibbert, and at the same time, in or- 
der to appease and satisfy the demand of the said Sir 
Eyre Coote, did create for him that new establish- 
ment, hereinbefore specified, of eighteen thousand 
pounds per annum, — insomuch that, instead of tho 
allowance of six thousand pounds a year, in lieu of 
travelling charges, and of all emoluments and allow- 
ances whatsoever, to which the pay and allowances of 
commander-in-chief were expressly limited by the 
united act of the legislative and executive powers of 
the Company, the annual charge to be borne by the 











Coiopanj on that account was increased bj the said 
Warren Hastings to the enormous sum of thirty-eight 
thousand two hundred and seventeen pounda ten 
shillings sterling. 

That on the 1st of November, 1779, the said War- 
ren Hastings did move and carry it in Council, " that 
the Resident at the Vizier's court should be furnish- 
ed with an account of all the extra allowances and 
charges of the commander-in-chief when in the field, 
with orders to add the same to the debit of the Viz- 
ier's account, as a part of his general subsidy, — the 
charge to commence from the day on which the gen- 
eral shall pass the Caramnassa, and to continue till 
his return to the same line." That this additional 
expense imposed by the said Warren Hastings on the 
Vizier was unjust in itself, and a breach of treaty 
with that prince : the specific amount of the subsidy 
to be paid by him having been fixed by a treaty, to 
which no addition could justly be made, but at the 
previous requisition of the Vizier. That the Court 
of Directors, in their letter of the 18th of October, 

1780, did condemn and prohibit the continuation of 
the allowances above mentioned to Sir Eyre Coot in 
the following words: " These allowances appear to us 
in a light so very extraordinary, and so repugnant to 
the spirit of a resolution of the General Court of Pro- 
prietors respecting the allowance made to General 
Clavering, that we positively direct that they be dis- 
continued iminediately, and no part thereof paid after 
the receipt of this letter." That on the 27th of April, 

1781, the Governor-General and Council, in obedience 
to the orders of the Directors, did signify the same to 
the Commissary-General, as an instruction to him that 
the extraordinary allowances to Sir Eyre Coote ehould 

I 11 1 . 1. .L ->pglWWwi Mitrriii. 

▲OAntar wabben babtinqs. 


l« ditcontinued and no part thereof paid after that day. 
That it appears, novertheless, that the said extra allow- 
ances (amouuting to above twenty thousand pounds 
sterling a year) were continued to be charged to the 
Vizier, and paid to Sir Eyre Coote, in defiance of the 
orders of the Court of Directors, in defiance of the 
consequent resolution of the Governor-General and 
Council, and in contradiction to the terms of the orig- 
inal motion made by the said Warren Hastings for 
adding those allowances to the debit of the Vizier, 
viz., " that they should continue till Sir Eyre Coote's 
return to the Caramnassa." That Sir Eyre Coote 
arrived at Calcutta about the end of August, 1780, 
and must have crooked the Caramnassa, in his return 
from Oude, some weeks before, when the charge on 
the Vizier, if at any time proper, ought to have 
ceased. That it appears that the said allowances were 
continued to be charged against the Vizier and paid 
to Si- Eyre Coote for three years after, even while he 
was serving in the Carnatic, and that this was done 
by the sole authority and private command of the 
said Warren Hastings. 

That the East India Company having thought prop- 
er to create the office of Advocate-General in Bengal, 
and to appoint Sir John Day to that office, it was 
resolved by a General Court of Proprietors that a 
salary of three thousand pounds a year should bo al- 
lowed to o said Sir John Day, in full consideration 
of all demands and allowances whatsoever for his servi- 
ces to the Compantf at the Presidency of Fort William. 
That the said Warren Hastings, nevertheless, shortly 
after Sir John Day's arrival in Bengal, did increase 
the said Sir John Day's salary and allowances to six 
thousand pounls a year, in direct disobedience of the 












resolation of Ute Court of Propriotora, and of the or* 
der of the Court of Directors. That the Directors, 
M soon as thejr were informed of this proceeding, 
declared, ** that they held thenuelve* bound bj the reso- 
lution of the General Court, and that thejr could not 
allow it to be disregarded bj the Company's servants 
in India," and ordered that the increased allowan- 
ces should be forthwith discontinued. That the said 
Warren Hastings, after having first tb/.u^Vi it ncce> 
sary, in obedience to the orders of the Court of Direc- 
tors, to stop the extraordinary allowance which ho had 
granted to Sir John Day, did afterwards resolve that 
the allowance which had been struck off should be re- 
paid to him, upon his signing an obligation to refund 
the amount which he might receive, in case the Direc- 
tors should confirm their former orders, already twice 

'en. That in this transaction the said Warren 
^dstings trifled with the authority of the Company, 
eluded the repeated orders of the Directors, and ex- 
posed the Company to the risk and uncertainty of re- 
covering, at a distant period, and perhaps by a process 
of law, a sum of money which they had positively or- 
dered him not to pay. 

That in the latter part of the year 1776, by the 
death of Colonel Monson, the whole power of the gov- 
ernment of Fort William devolved to the Governor 
and one member of the Council ; and that from that 
time the Governor-General and Council have general- 
ly consisted of an even number of persons, in conse- 
quence of which the casting voice of the said Warren 
Hastings has usually prevailed in the decision of all 
questions. That about the end of the year 1776 the 
whole civil establishment of the said government did 
not exceed 205,399^. per annum; that in the year 


1783 the eaid citU establishment had Iwen iiicroascd 
to tho enormous annual sum of t)27,94oZ. That sucli 
increase in the civil establishment could not have tak- 
en place, if the said Warren Hastings, who was at tlio 
head of the government, with the power annexed to 
the casting voice, had not actively promoted the sui.l 
hicroaso, which ho had power to prevent, and which 
it was his duty to have prevented. That by such ini 
moderate waste of the property of his employers, and 
by such yoaadalous breach of his fidelity to them, it 
was the intention of the said Warren Hastings to gain 
and secure the attachment and support of a multitude 
of individuals, by whoso united interest, influence, and 
intrigues he hoped to be protected against any future 
inquiry into his conduct. That it was of itself high 
ly criminal in the said Warren Hastings to have so 
wasted the property of the East India Company, and 
that the j>nrnose to be obtained by such waste was a 
great aggravation of that crime. 

That among the various instances of profusion by 
which the civil establishment of Port William was 
increased to the enormous annual sum hereinbefore 
mentioned, it appears that a Salt Office was created, 
of six commissioners, whose annual emoluments were 
as follows, viz. : — 

President, or Comptroller, per annum £ 18,480 

1st member 13,100 

2d do 11,480 

3d do 13,183 

4th do 6,257 

6th do 10,307 

£ 72,807 
VOL. iz. 3 




* I 

I °?l 

' ., i 



1 J 


i- % 

That a Board of Revenue was created by the said 
Warren Hastings, consisting of five commissioners, 
whoso annual emoluments were as follows, viz. :- 

1st member, per annum . . . . £ 10,950 

2d do 9,100 

8d do 9,100 

4th do 9,100 

5th do 9,100 

je 47,350 

That David Anderson, Esquire, first member of 
the said board, did not execute the duties, though he 
received the emoluments of the said office: having 
acted, for the greatest part of the time, as ambas- 
sador to Mahdajee Sindia, with a further salary of 
4,280Z. a year, making in all 15,230Z. a year. 

That the said Warren Hastings did create an office 
of Agent -Victualler to the garrison of Fort William, 
whose profits, on an average of three years, were 
15,970i. per annum. That this agency was held by 
the Postmaster-General, who in that capacity received 
2,200Z. a year from the Company, and who was actu- 
ally no higher than a writer in the service. That the 
person who held these lucrative offices, viz., John 
Belli, was private secretary to the said Warren Hast- 

That the said Warren Hastings created a nominal 
office of Resident at Goa, where the Company never 
had a Resident, nor business of any kind to transact, 
and gave the said nominal office to a person who was 
not a covenanted servant of the Company, with an 
allowance of 4,280Z. a year. 

Tliat these instances are proofs of a criminal pro- 



fusion and high breach of trust to the India Company 
in the said Warren Hastings, under whose govern- 
ment, and by means of whose special power, derived 
from the effect of his casting voice, all tlie said waste 
and profusion did take place. 

That at the end of the year 1780, when, as the 
Court of Directors affirm, the Company were in the ut- 
most distress for money, and almost every department in 
arrear, and when it appears that there was a great 
scarcity and urgent want of grain at Fort St. George, 
the said Warren Hastings did accept of a proposal 
made to him by James Peter Auriol, then Secretary 
to the Couticil, to supply the Presidency of Fort St. 
George with rice and other articles, and did appoint 
the said Auriol to be the agent for supplying all the 
other Presidencies with those articles ; that the said 
Warren Hastings declared that the intention of the 
appointment " was most likely to be fulfilled by a lib- 
eral consideration of it," and therefore allowed the 
said Auriol a commission of fifteen per cent on the 
whole of his disbursements, thereby rendering it the 
direct interest of the said Auriol to make his dis- 
bursements as great as possible ; that the chance of 
capture by the enemy, or danger of the sea, was to bo 
at the risk of the India Company, and not of the said 
Auriol ; that the said Warren Hastings declared per- 
sonally to the said Auriol, "that this post was in- 
tended as a reward for his long and faithful services." 
That the President and Council of Bombay did re- 
monstrate against what they called the enormous 
amount of the charges of the rice with which they 
were supplied, which they state to be nine rupees a 
bag at Calcutta, when they themselves could have 
contracted for its delivery at Bombay, free of all risk 

3 ' 






I t 

I ' 

and charges, at five rupees and three sixteenths per 
bag ; and that even at Madras, where the distress and 
demand was greatest, the supplies of grain by private 
traders, charged to the Company, were nineteen per 
cent cheaper than that supplied by the said Auriol, 
exclusive of the risk of the sea and of capture by the 
enem''. That it is stated by the Court of Directors, 
that t le agent's commission on a supply of a single 
year (■ he said commission being not only charged on 
the ^iv iie cost of the rice, but also on the freight 
and all other charges) would amount to pounds ster- 
ling 26,873, and by the said Auriol himself is admit- 
ted to amount to 18,292?. That William Larkins, 
the Accountant-General at Fort William, having been 
ordered to examine the accounts of the said agent, 
did report to the Governor-General and Council, that 
he found them to be correct in the additions and cal- 
culations; and that then the said Larkins adds the 
following declaration : " The agent being upon honor 
with respect to the sums charged in his accounts for 
the cost of the articles supplied, I did not think my- 
self authorized to require any voucher of the sums 
charged for the demurrage of sloops, either as to the 
time of detention or the rate of the charge, or of those 
for the articles lost in going down the river ; and on 
that ground I thought myself equally bound to admit 
the sums acknowledged as received for the sales of 
goods returned, without requiring vouchers of the 
rates at which they were sold." That in this transac- 
tion the said Warren Hastings has been guilty of a 
high breach of trust and duty, in the unnecessary ex- 
penditure of the Company's money, and in subjecting 
the Company to a profusion of expense, at all times 
wholly unjustifiable, but particularly at the time when 

I <i 




that expense was incurred. That the said Warren 
Hastings was guilty of breach of orders, as well as 
breach of trust, in not advertising generally for pro- 
posals ; in not contracting indifferently for the supplies 
with such merchants as might offer to furnish them 
on the lowest terms ; in giving an enormous commis- 
sion to an agent, and that commission not confined to 
the prime cost of the articles, but to be computed on 
the whole of his charges ; in accepting of the honor of 
the said agent o^ ^afficient voucher for the cost of 
the articles sup nd for all charges whatever on 

which his commi. . ?as to be computed ; and final- 
ly, in giving a lucrative agency for the supply of a 
distressed and starving province as a reward to a Sec- 
retary of State, whose labors in that capacity ought 
to have been rewarded by an avowed public salary, 
and not otherwise. That, after the first year of the 
said agency was expired, the said Warren Hastings 
did agree, that, for the future, the commission to be 
drawn by the said agent should be reduced to five 
per cent, which the Governor-General and Council 
then declared to be the cuitomary, amount drawn hy 
merchants; but that even in this reduction of the 
commission the said Warren Hastings was guilty of 
a deception, and did not in fact reduce the commis- 
sion from fifteen to five per cent, having immediately 
after resolved that he, the agent, should be allowed 
the current interest of Calcutta upon all his drafts 
on the Treasury from the day of their dates, until 
they should be completely liquidated ; that the legal 
interest of money in Bengal is twelve per cent per 
annum, and the current interest from eight to ten 
per cent. 







^ I 

t I 

I • 



That, before the appointment of the Governor- 
General and Council of Fort William by act of 
Parliament, the allowanf^es made by the East India 
Company to the Presidents of that government were 
abundantly sufficient; and that the said Presidents 
in general, and the said Warren Hastings particular- 
ly, was restrained by a specific covenant and indent- 
ure, which he entered into with the Company, from 
accepting any gifts, rewards, or gratuities whatsoev- 
er, on any account or pretence whatsoever. That 
in the Regulating Act passed in the year 1773, 
which appointed the said Warren Hastings, Esquire, 
Governor-General of Fort William in Bengal, a sal- 
ary of twenty-five thousand pounds a year was es- 
tablished for him, to which the Court of Directors 
added, " that he should enjoy their principal houses, 
with the plate and furniture, both in town and coun- 
try, rent-free." That the same law which created 
the office a"d provided the salary of the said Warren 
Hastings did expressly, and in the clearest and most 
comprehensive terms that could be devised, prohibit 
him from receiving any present, gift, or donation, in 
any manner or on any account whatsoever ; and that 
the said Warren Hastings perfectly understood the 
meaning, and acknowledged the binding force of 
this prohibition, before he accepted of the office to 
which it was annexed : he knew, and had declared, 
that the prohibition was positive and decisive ; that it 
admitted neither of refinemerU or misconstruction; and 
that in his opinion an opposition would be to incur the 

That, notwithstanding the covenants and engage* 



ments above mentioned, it appears in the recorded 
proceedings of the Governor-General and Council 
of Port William, that sundry charges have been 
brought against the said Warren Hastings for gifts 
or presents corruptly takeu by him before tlv pro- 
mulgation of the act of 1773 in India, and that these 
charges were produced at the Council Board in the 
presence of the said Warren Hastings. That, in 
March, 1775, the late Rajah Nundcomar, a native 
Hindoo, of the highest caste in his religion, and of 
the highest rank in society, by the -offices which he 
had held under the country government, did lay be- 
fore the Council an account of various sums of mon- 
ey paid by him to the said Warren Hastings, amount- 
ing to forty thousand pounds and upwards, for oflBces 
and employments corruptly disposed of by the said 
Warren Hastings, and did offer and engage to prove 
and establish the same by sufficient evidence. That 
this account is stated with a minute particularity and 
precision ; the date of each payment, down to that of 
small sums, is specified ; the various coins in which 
such payments were severally made are distinguished ; 
and the different persons through whose hands the 
money passed into those of the said Warren Hastings 
are named. That such particularity on the face of 
such a charge, supposing it false, is favorable to the 
party wrongfully accused, and exposes the accuser 
to an instant and easy detection : for, though, as the 
said Warren Hastings himself has observed on an- 
other occasion, " papers may be forged, and eviden- 
ces may appear in numbers to attest them, yet it 
must always be an easy matter to detect the falsity 
of any forged paper produced by examining the wit- 
nesses separately, and subjecting them to a subse- 



-i I 




I i 


qucnt cross-examination, in which case, if false, they 
will not be able to persevere in one regular, consistent 
story " ; whereas, if no advantage be taken of such 
particularity in the charge to detect the falsehood 
thereoi, and if no attempt to disprove it, and no de- 
fence whatever be made, a presumption justly and 
reasonably arises in favor of the truth of such charge. 
That the said Warren Hastings, instead of offering 
anything in his defence, declared that he would not 
mffer Nundcomar to appear before the hoard as hia 
accuser; that he attempted to indict his said accuser 
for a conspiracy, in which he failed; and that the 
said Rajah Nundcomar was soon after, and while his 
charge against the said Warren Hastings was depend- 
ing before the Council, indicted upon an English 
penal statute, which does not extend even to Scot- 
land,* before the Supreme Court of Judicature, for 
an oflfence said to have been committed several years 
before, and not capital by the laws of India, and was 
condemned and executed. That the evidence of this 
man, not having been encountered at the time when 
it might and ought to hasre been by the said Warren 
Hastings, remains justly in force against him, and is 
not abated by the capital punishment of the said 
Nundcomar, but rather confirmed by the time and 
circumstances in which the accuser of the said War- 
ren Hastings suffered death. That one of the offices 
for which a part of the money above mentioned is 
stated to have been paid to the said Warren Hastings 
was given by him to Munny Begum, the widow of 
the late Mir Jaffier, Nabob of Bengal, whose son, by 
another woman, holds that title at present. That 
the said Warren Hastings had been instructed by the 

• 2d year of George 11 


i -^ • ^ - 

.'it t 

!i 1 

II ■ 




Court of Directors of the East India Company to ap- 
point " a minuter to transact the political affairs of 
the governnaient, and to select for that purpose some 
person well qualified for tlie affairs of government, to 
be the minister and guardian of the Nabob's minor- 
ity." That for these offices, and for the execution of 
the several duties belonging to them, the said War- 
ren Ilastings selected and appointed the said Munny 
Begum, a woman evidently unqualified for and in- 
capable of such offices, and restrained from acting in 
such capacities by her necessary seclusion from the 
world and retirement in a seiaglio. That, a consid- 
erable deficiency or embezzlement appearing in this 
woman's account of the young Nabob's stipend, she 
voluntarily declared, by a writing under her seal, 
that she had given fifteen thousand pounds to the 
said Warren Hastings for an entertainment, — which 
declaration corresponds with and confirms that part 
of the charge produced by Rajah Nundcomar to 
which it relates. That neither this nor any other 
part of the said charge has been at any time direct- 
ly denied or disputed by the said Warren Hastings, 
though made to his face, and though he was repeat- 
edly accused by his colleagues, who were appointed by 
Parliament at the same time with himself, of pecula- 
tion of every sort. That, instead of promoting a strict 
inquiry into his conduct for the clearance of his inno- 
cence and honor, he did repeatedly endeavor to elude 
and ocifle all inquiry by attempting to dissolve the 
meetings of the Council at which such charges were 
produced, and by other means, and has not since 
taken any steps to disprove or refute the same. 
That the said Warren Hastings, so long ago as Sep- 
tember, 1775, assured the Court of DirectDrs, " that 




I i 






. * 4 


it was his fixed determination most fully and liber- 
all/ to explain every circumstance of his conduct 
on the points on which he had been injuriously ar- 
raigned, and to afford them the clearest conviction 
of his own integrity, and of the propriety of his mo- 
tives for declining a present defence of it " ; and hav- 
ing never since given to the Court of Directors any 
explanation whatever, much less the full and liberal 
explanation he had promised s^^ repeatedly, has there- 
by abandoned even that late and protracted defence 
which he himself must have thought necessary to be 
made at some time or other, and which he would be 
thouglit to have deferred to a period more suitable 
and convenient than that in which the facts were re- 
cent, and the impression of these and other charges 
of the same nature against him was fresh and unim- 
paired in the minds of men. 

That on the 30th of JIarch, 1775, a member of the 
Council produced and laid before the board a peti- 
tion from Mir Zein Abul Deen, (formerly farmer of 
a district, and who had been in creditable stations,) 
setting forth, that Khfin Jehan Khan, then Phousdar 
of Hoogly, had obtained that ofRce from the said 
Warren Hastings, with a salary of seventy-two thou- 
sand sicca rupees a year, and that the said Phousdar 
had given a receipt of bribe to the patron of the ntt/, 
meaning Warren Hastings, to pay him annually thir- 
ty-six thousand rupees a year, and also to his banian, 
Cantoo Baboo, four thousand rupees a year, out of 
the salary above mentioned. That by the thirty-fifth 
artii ' jf the instructions given to the Governor-Gen- 
eral and Council, they are directed " immediately to 
cause tlie strictest inquiry to be made into all op- 
pressions which might have been committed either 




against the natives or Europeans, and into all abuses 
that might have prevailed in the collection of the rev- 
enues, or any part of the civil government of the 
Presidency, and to communicate to the Directors all 
information which they might be able to obtain rela- 
tive thereto, or to any dissipation or embezzlement 
of the Company's money," That the above petition 
and instruction having been read in Council, it was 
moved that the petitioner should be ordered to attend 
the next day to make good his charge. Tliat the 
said Warren Hastings declared, " that it appeared to 
him to be the purpose of the majority to maice him 
the sole object of their personal attacks ; that they 
had taken their line, and might pursue it; that he 
should have other remarks to make upon this trans- 
action, but, as the^ would be equally applicable to 
many others which in the course of this business were 
likely to be brought before the board, he should say 
no more on the subject " ; — and he objected to the 
motion. That by the preceding declaration the said 
Warren Hastings did admit tliat many other charges 
were likely to be brought against him, and tliat such 
charges would be of a similar nature to the first, viz., 
a corrupt bargaining for the disposal of a great office, 
since he declared that his remarks ou that transac 
tion would be equally applicable to the rest; and 
that, by objecting to the motion for the personal at- 
tendance of the accuser, he resisted and disobeyed 
the Company's instructions, and did, as far as de- 
pended on his power, endeavor to obstruct and pre- 
vent all inquiry into tlie charge. That in so doing 
he failed in his duty to the Company, he disobeyed 
their express orders, and did leave the cliarge against 
himself without c reply, and even without a denial, 





^ f I 


I i E . I 

and with that unavoidable presumption against his 
innocence which lies against every person accused 
who not only refuses to plead, but, as far as his vote 
goes, endeavors to prevent au ezami nation of the 
charge, and to stifle all inquiry into the truth of it. 
T'"t, the motion having been nevertheless carried, 
th id Warren Hastings did, on the day following, 
declare, " that he could not sit to be confronted with 
such accusers, nor suffer a judicial inquiry into hia 
conduct at the board of which he was president, and 
declared the meeting of the board dissolved." That 
the board continued to sit and examine witnesses, 
servants of the Phousdar, on oatli and written evi- 
dence, being letters under the hand and seal of the 
Phousdar, all directly tending to prove the charge: 
viz., tliat, out of the salary of seventy-two thousand 
rupees a year paid by the Company, the said Phous- 
dar received but thirty-two thousand, and that the re- 
mainder was received by the said Warren Hastings 
and his banian. That the Phousdar, though repeat- 
edly ordered to attend the board, did, under vari- 
ous pretences, decline attending, until the 19th of 
May, when, the letters stated be his, that is, under 
his hand and seal, being shown to him, it was pro- 
posed by a member of the board that he should be 
asked whether he had any objection to swear to the 
truth of such answers as he might make to the ques- 
tions proposed by the board ; that the said Warren 
Hastings objected to his being put to his oath ; that 
the question was nevertheless put to him, in conse- 
quence of a resolution of the board; that he first 
declined to swear, under pretence that it was a mat- 
ter of serious consequence to his character to take an 
oath, and, when it was finally left to his option, he 




declared, "Mean people might strear, but that hU 
character would not allow him, — that he could not 
swear, and had rather subject himself to a loss." 
That the evidence in support of the charge, being ou 
oath, was in this manner left uncontradicted. That 
it was admitted bj the said Warren Hastings, that 
neither Mussulmen or Hindoos are forbidden Ly the 
precepts of their religion to swear ; that it is not true, 
as the said Warren Hastings assorted, that it wns r©» 
pugnant to the manners either of Hindoos or Mus- 
sulmen ; and that, if, under such pretences, the na- 
tives were to be exempted from taking an oath, 
when examined by the Governor and Council, all the 
inquiries pointed out to them by the Company's in- 
structions might stop or be defeated. That no valid 
reason was or could be assigned why the said Phous- 
dar should not be examined on oath ; that the charge 
was not against himself; and that, if any questions 
had been put to him, tending to make him accuse 
himself, he might have declined to answer them. 
That, if he could havo -afely sworn to the innocence 
of the said Warren Husiings, fri^in whom he received 
his employment, he was bound in gratitude as well 
as justice to the said Warren Hastings to have con- 
sented to be examined on oath ; that, not having 
done BO, and having been supported and abetted in 
his refusal by the said Warren Hastings himself, 
whose character and honor were immediately at 
f^ake, the whole of the evidence for the truth of the 
charge remains unanswered, and in full force against 
the said Warren Hastings, who on this occasion re- 
curred to the declaration he had before made to the 
Directors, -viz., " that he would most fully and lib- 
erally explain every circumstance of his conduct," 








but has never einco that time giren the Dirccton 
any explanation whatsoever of his said conduct. 
And finally, that, when the Court of Directors, in 
January, 1776, referred the question (concerning the 
legality of the power assumed and repeatedly exor- 
cised by the said Warretj Hustings, of dissolving the 
Council at his pleasure) to the late Charles Kayer, 
then standing counsel of the East India Company, 
the said Charles Sayer declared his opinion in favor 
of the power, but concerning the \ise and exercise of 
it in the cases stated did declare his opinion in the 
following words : " I bclievo he, Warren Hastings, is 
the first governor that ever dissolved a cotmcil in- 
quiring into his behavior, when he was innocent." 
Before he could summon three councils, and dissolve 
them, he had time fully to consider what would be 
the result of such conduct, to convince everybody be- 
yond a doubt of h{» I'oniieious guilt. — That, by a reso- 
lution of a majority of the Council, constituting a 
lawful act of the Governor-General and Council, the 
said Khun Jehan Kli Jn was dismissed from the office 
of Phousdar of Hoogly for a contempt of the au- 
thority of the board ; that, within c. few weeks after 
the death of the late Colonel Monson, the number 
of the Council being then even, and all questions 
being then determined by the Governor-General's 
casting voice, the said Warren Hastings did move 
and carry it in Council, that the said Khan Jehan 
Khan should be restored to his office ; and that res- 
toration, not having been preceded, accompanied, or 
followed by any explanation or defence whatsoever, 
or even by a denial of the specific and circumstan- 
tial charge of collusion with the said Khan Jehan 
Khan, has confirmed the truth of the said charge. 





Tliat, besides tlio ruai* ^cd to liave been paid 
to tlio said Wrtrrou Hast / tlie paid Nuudcouiar 

and Munny Ho^' > ukI l.ii>Hi Jehaii Khiin, and be- 
sides tlio sura oi s^iio hiuidred and ten thousand 
potmds already mentioned to have been accepted 
without hesitation by him, as a present on the part 
of the Xabob of Oude and that of his ministers, the 
circumstances of which have been particularly report- 
ed to the House of Commons, it appears i)y the con- 
fession of the said Warren Hastings, that ho has at 
different times since the promulgation of the act of 
1773, receiTed various other sums, contrary to tho 
express prohibition of tho said act, and his own de- 
ilared sense of the evident intent and obligation there- 
of. — That in tho month of Juno, 1780, tho said War- 
ren Hastings made to the Council what ho cii'led " a 
very unusual tender, by offering to the 
Company from the expense of a particular measure, 
and to take it upon himself; declaring that he had al- 
ready deposited two lacs of rupees [or twenty-throo 
thousand pounds] in the hands of the Company's 
sub-treasurer for that service." That in a subse- 
quent letter, dated the 29th of November, 1780, he 
informed the Court of Directors, that " this money, 
by whatever means it came into their possession, was 
not Ms own" ; but he did not then, nor has he at any 
time since, made known to the Court of Directors 
from whom or on what account he received that mon- 
ey, as it was his duty to have done in tho first in- 
stance, and notwithstanding tho said Directors sig- 
nified to him their expectation that he should com- 
municate to them " immediate information of the 
channel by which this money came into his possession, 
with a complete illustration of the cause or causes of 






SO extraordinary an event." But, from evidence ex- 
amined in England, it has been discovered that this 
money was received by the said Warren Hastings 
from Cheyt Sing, the Rajah of Benares, who was soon 
after dispossessed of all his property and driven froia 
his country and government by the said Warren Hast- 
ings. That, notwithstanding the declaration made 
by the said Warren Hastings, that he had actually 
deposited the sum above mentioned in the hands of 
the Company's sub-treasurer for their service, it does 
not appear that " any entry whatsoever of that or any 
other payment by the Governor-General was made in 
the Treasury accounts at or about the time," nor is 
there any trace in the Company's books of its being 
actually paid into their treasury. It appears, then, 
by the confession of the said Warren Hastings, that 
this money was received by him ; but it does not ap- 
pear that he has converted it to the property and use 
of the Company. 

That in a letter from the said Warren Hastings to 
the said Court of Directors, dated the 22d of May, 
1782, but not dispatched, as it might and ought to 
have been, at that time, but detained and kept back 
by the said Warren Hastings till the 16th of Decem- 
ber following, he has confessed the receipt of various 
other sums, amounting (with that which he accepted 
from the Nabob of Oude) to nearly two hundred 
thousand pounds, which sums he affirmed had been 
converted to the Company's property through his 
means, but without discovering from whom or on 
what account he received the same. That, instead 
of converting this money to the Company's property, 
as he affirmed he had done, it appears that he had lent 
the greater part of it to the Company upon bonds 



bearing interest, which bonds were demanded and re- 
ceived by him, and, for aught that yet appears, have 
never been given up or cancelled. That for another 
considerable part of the above-mentioned sum he has 
taken credit to himself, as for a deposit of his own 
property, and therefore demandablo by him out of the 
Company's treasury at his discretion. That all sums 
so lent or deposited are not alienated from tlie person 
who lends or deposits the same ; consequently, that 
the declaration made by the said Warren Hastings, 
that he had converted the whole of these suras to the 
Company's property, was not true. Nor would such 
a transfer, if it had really been made, have justified 
the said Warren Hastings in originally receiving the 
money, which, being in the first instance contrary to 
law, could not be rendered legal by any subsequent 
disposition or application thereof; much less would it 
nave justified the said Warren Hastings in delaying 
to make a discovery of these transactions to the Court 
of Directors until he had heard of the inquiries then 
begun and proceeding in Parliament, in finally mak- 
ing a discovery, such as it is, in terms the most in- 
tricate, obscure, and coutradictory. That, instead of 
that full and clear explanation of his conduct which 
the Court of Directors demanded, and which the said 
Warren Hastings was bound to give them, he has 
contented himself with telling the said Directors, that, 
" if this matter was to be exposed to the view of the 
public, his reasons for acting as he had done might 
furnish a variety of conjectures to which it would be 
oi little use to reply ; that he either chose to conceal 
the first receipts from public curiosity by receiving 
bonds for the amount, or possibly acted without any 
studied design which his niomoiy could at that dis- 

VOI,. IX. 3 



♦ hi 



tance of time verify; and that he eouldhaxe concealed 
them from their eye and that of the public forever." 
That the discovery, as far as it goes, establishes the 
guilt of the said Warren Hastings in taking money 
against law, but does not warrant a conclusion that 
he has discovered all that he may have taken ; that, 
on the cont'i^ry, such discovery, not being made in 
proper time, and when made being imperfect, per- 
plexed, and wholly unsatisfactory, leads to a just and 
reasonable presumption that other facts of the same 
nature have been concealed, since those which he has 
confessed might have been forever, and that this 
partial confession was either extorted from the said 
Warren Hastings by the dread of detection, or made 
with a view of removing suspicion, and preventing 
any further inquiry into his conduct. 

That the said Warren Hastings, in a letter to the 
Court of Directors dated 21st of February, 1784, has 
confessed his having privately received another sum 
of money, the amount of which he has not declared, 
but which, from the application he says he has made 
of it, could not be less than thirty-four thousand 
pounds sterling. That he has not informed the Di- 
rectors from whom he received this money, at what 
time, nor on what account ; but, on the contrary, has 
attempted to justify the receipt of it, which was illegal, 
by the application of it, which was unauthorized and 
unwarrantable, and which, if admitted as a reason for 
receiving money privately, would constitute a prece- 
dent of the most dangerous nature to the Company's 
service. That, in attempting to justify the receipt 
and application of the said money, he has endeavored 
to establish principles of conduct in a Governor which 
tend to subvert all order and regularity in the cou- 




duct of public business, to encourage and facilitate 
fraud and corruption in all offices of pecuniary trust, 
and to defeat all inquiry into the misconduct of any 
person in whom pecuniary trust is reposed. — That the 
said Warren Hastings, in his letter above mentioned, 
has made a declaration to the Court of Directors in 
the following terms : " Having had occasion to dis- 
burse from my own cash many sums, which, though 
required to enable me to execute the duties of my 
station, I have hitherto omitted to enter in my public 
accounts, and my own fortune being unequal to so 
heavy a charge, I have resolved to reimburse myself 
in a mode the most suitable to the situation of your 
affairs, by charging the same in m> Durbar accounts 
of the present year, and crediting them by a sum pri- 
vately received, and appropriated to your service in 
.he same manner with other sums received on account 
of the Honorable Company, and already carried to 
their account." That at the time of writing this let- 
ter the said "Warren Hastings had been in possession 
of the government of Port William about twelve years, 
with a clear salary, or avowed emoluments, at no time 
less than twenty-five thousand pounds sterling a year, 
exclusive of which all the principal expenses of his 
residence were paid for by the Company. Tliat, if the 
services mentioned by him were required to enable 
him to execute the duties of his station, he ought not 
to have omitted to enter them in his public accounts 
at the times when the expenses were incurred. That, 
if it was true, as he affirms, that, when he first en- 
gaged in these expenses, he had no intention to carry 
them to the account of the Company, there was no 
subsequent change in his situation which could justify 
his departing from that intention. That, if his own 





fortune in the year 1784 was unequal to so heavy a 
charge, the state of his fortune at any earlier period 
must have been still more unequal to so heavy a 
charge. That the fact so asserted by the said War- 
ren Hastings leads directly to an inference palpably 
false and absurd, viz., that, the longer a Governor- 
Gdneral holds that lucrative office, the poorer he must 
become. That neither would the assertion, if it were 
true, nor the inference, if it were admitted, justify 
the cor duct avowed by the said Warren Hastings in 
resolving to reimburse himself out of the Company's 
property withe ut thoir consent or knowledge. — That 
the account transmitted in this letter is styled by him- 
self an aggregate of a contingent account of twelve gears ; 
that all contingent accounts should be submitted to 
those who ought to have an official control over them, 
at annual or other shorter oeriods, in order that the 
expense already incurred may be checked and exam 
ined, and similar expenses, if disapproved of, may be 
prohibited in time ; that, after a very long period is 
elapsed, all check and control over such expenses is 
impracticable, and, if it were practicable in the pres- 
ent instance, would be completely useless, since the 
said Warren Hastings, without waiting for the con- 
sent of the Directors, did resolve to reimburse himself. 
That the conduct of the said Warren Hastings, hi 
withholding these accounts for twelve years together, 
and then resolving to reimburse himself without the 
consent of his employers, has been fraudulent in the 
first instance, and in the second amounts to a deni- 
al and mockery of the authority placed over him by 
law ; and that he has thereby set a dangerous exam- 
ple to his successors, and to every man in trust or 
office under him. — That the mode in which he has 



reimbursed himself is a crime of a much higher order, 
and f reatly aggravates whatever was already criminal 
in tho other parts of this transaction. That the said 
Warren Hastings, in declaring that he should reim- 
burse himself by crediting the Company by a sum 
privately received, has acknowledged himself guilty 
of an illegal act in receiving money privately. That 
he has suppressed or withheld every particular which 
could throw any light on a conduct so suspicious in 
a Governor as the private receipt of money. That 
the general confession of the pi "rate receipt of a 
large sum in gross, in which no circumstance of 
time, place, occasion, or person, nor even the amount, 
is specified, tends to cover or protect any act of the 
same nature (as far as a £;oneral confession can pro- 
tect such acts) which may be detected hereafter, and 
which in fact may not make part of the gross sum so 
confessed, and that it tends to perplex and defeat all 
inquiry into such practices. — That the said Warren 
Hastings, in stating to the Directors that ho has re- 
solved to reimburse himself in a mode the most suit- 
able to the situation of their ajfairs, viz., by receiving 
money privately against law, has stated a presump- 
tion highly injurious to the integrity of the said Di- 
rectors, viz., that they will not object to, or even in- 
quire into, any extraordinary expenses incurred and 
charged by their Governors in India, provided such 
expenses are reimbursed by money privately and ille- 
gally received. That he has not explained what that 
situation of their affairs was or could be to wliich so 
dangerous and corrupt a principle was or might be 
applied. — That no evidence has been produced to 
prove that it was true, nor any ground of argument 
stated to show that it might be credible, that any na- 






tire of India had voluntarily and gratuitously given 
money privately to the said Warren Hastings, that is, 
without some prospect of a benefit in return, or some 
dread of bis resentment, if he refused. That it is not 
a thing to be believed, that any native would give 
large sums privately to a Governor, which he refused 
to give or lend publicly to government, unless it were 
to derive some adequate secret advantage froai the 
favor, or to avoid some mischief from the enmity of 
such Governor. — That the late confessions made by 
the said Warren Hastings of money received against 
law are no proof that he did not originally intend to 
appropriate the same to his own use, such confessions 
havmg been made at a suspicious moment, when, 
and not before, he was apprised of the inquiries com- 
menced in the House of Commons, and when a dread 
of the consequence of those inquiries might act upon 
his mind. That such confessions, from the obscure, 
intricate, and contradictory manner in which they 
are made, imply guilt in the said Warren Hastings, 
as far as they go ; that they do not furnish any color 
of reason to conclude that he has confessed all the 
money which he may have corruptly received ; but 
that, on the contrary, they warrant a just and reason- 
able presumption, that, in discovering some part of 
the bribes he had received, he hoped to luU suspicion, 
and thereby . )• 3al and secure the rest. 

That the Court of Directors, when the former ac- 
counts of these transactions came before them, did 
show an evident disposition not to censure the said 
Warren Hastings, but to give the most favorabla 
construction to his conduct; that, nevertheless, they 
found themselves obliged "to confess that the state- 
ment of those transactions appeared to them in many 





parts 80 unintelligible, that they felt themselves under 
the necessity of calling on the Governor-General for 
an explanation, agreeably to his promise voluntarily 

made to them." 

That their letter, containing this requisition, was 
received in Bengal in the month of August, 1784, 
and that the said Warren Hastings did not embark 
for England uutil tl ^ 2d of February, 1785, but 
made no reply to that letter before his departure, 
owing, as he has since said, to a variety of other more 
important occupations. That, under pretence of such 
occupations, he neglected to transmit to the Court 
of Directors a copy of a paper which, he says, con- 
tained the only account he ever kept of the transac- 
tion. That such a paper, or a copy of it, might have 
been transmitted without interrupting other impor- 
tant occupations, if any could be more important 
than that of giving a clear tJid satisfactory answer 
to the requisition of the Directors. That since his 
arrival in England he has written a letter to the 
chairman of that court, professedly in answer to 
their letter above mentioned, but in fact giving no 
explanation or satisfaction whatsoever on the points 
which they had declared to be unintelligible. That 
the terms of his letter are ambiguous and obscure, 
such as a guilty man might have recourse to in order 
to cover his guilt, but such as no innocent man, from 
whom nothing was required but to clear his inno- 
cence by giving plain answers to plain questions, 
could possibly have made use of. That in his letter 
of the 11th of July, 1785, he says, " that he has been 
kindly apprised that the information required as above 
was yet expected from him : that the submission which 
his respect would have enjoined him to pay to the 

n ! I- 



H : 




command imposed on him was lost to hia recollection, 
perliaps from tho stronger impression which the first 
and distant perusal of it had left on his mind thot it 
was rather intended as a reprehension for something 
which had given oiTence in his report of the original 
tran.«action than as expressive of any want of a°fur- 
ther elucidation of it." * 

That the said Warren Hastings, in affecting to 
doubt whether tlie information expressly required of 
bim by his employers was ex ^ or not, has en- 
deavored to justify a criminal delay and evasion in 
givuig It. That, considering tho importance of the 
subject, and the recent date of the command, it is not 
possible that it could be lost to his recollection; much 
less IS it possible that he could have understood the 
specific demand of an answer to specific questions to 
be intended only as a reprehension for a former of- 
fence, viz., the offence of withholding from the Di- 
rectors that very explanation wliich ho ought to have 
given in the first instance. That the said Warren 
Hastings, in his answer to the said questions, cau- 
tiously avoids affirming or denying anything in clear 
positive terms, and professes to recolleot nothing with 
absolute certainty. That he has not, even now, in- 
formed the Directors of the name of any one person 
from whom any part of the money in question was 
received, nor wliat was the motive of any one person 
for givnig the same. That he has, indeed, declared 
that his motive for lending to the Company, or depos- 
iting m their treasury in his own name, money wliicli 
he has in other places declared to be their proper- 
ty, was to avoid ostentation, and that lending the 




money was the least liable to reflection ; yet, when he 
has stated these and other conjectural motives for his 
owu conduct, he declares he will not affirm, though 
he u firmly permaded, that those were his sentiments on 
the occasion. That of one thing only the said Warren 
Hastings declares he is certain, viz., " that it was his 
design originally to have concealed the receipt of all the 
sums, except the second, even from the knowledge of 
the Court of Directors, but that, when fortune tlirew 
a sum in his way of a magnitude which could nut 
be concealed, and the peculiar delicacy of his situation 
at the time in which he received it made him more 
circumspect of appearances, he chose to apprise his 
employers of it." That the said Warren Hustings 
informs the Directors, that he had indorsed the 
bonds taken by him for money belonging to the 
Company, and lent by him to the Company in ord.'r 
to guard against their becoming a claim on the Com- 
pany, as part of his estate, in the event of his death ; 
but he has not affirmed, nor does it anywhere ap- 
pear, that he has surrendered tlie said bonds, as he 
ought to have done. That the said Warren Hast- 
ings, in affirming tliat he hud not time to answer the 
questions put to him by the Directors, while ho was 
in Bengal, — in not bringing with him to England 
the documents necessary to enable him to answer 
those questions, or in pretending t' at he has not 
brought tliem, — in referring the Directors back again 
to Bengal for those documents, and for any further 
information on a subject on which he has given them 
no information, — and particularly in referring them 
back to a person in Bengal for a paper wliich he says 
contained the only account he ever kept of the trans- 
action, while he himself professes to doubt whether 



that paper he ttill in being, whether it he in the handt 
of that person, or whether that person can recollect 
anything diatinctlg concerning it, — has been guiltj of 
gross evasions, and of palpable prevarication and de- 
ceit, as well as of contumacy and disobedience to the 
lawful orders of the Court of Directors, and thereby 
confirmed all the former evidence of his having con- 
stantly used the influence of his station for the most 
scandalous, illegal, and corrupt purposes. 


That "Warren Hastings having by his agent, Lauch- 
lan Macleane, Esquire, on the 10th day of October, in 
the year 1V6, " signified to the Court of Directors 
his desire to resign his office of Governor-General of 
Bengal, and requested their nomination of a succes- 
sor to the vacancy which would be thereby occa- 
sioned in <he Supreme Council," the Court of Direc- 
tors did t( reupon desire the said Lauchlan Macleane 
" to inform them of the authority under which he 
acted in a point of such very great importance " ; 
and the said Lauchlan Macleane "signifying there- 
upon his readiness to give the court every possi- 
ble satisfaction on that subject, but tlie powers with 
which he was intrusted by the papers in his custody 
being mixed with other matters of a nature extremely 
confidential, he would submit the same to the inspec- 
tion of any three of the members of the court," the 
said Court of Directors empowered the Chairman, 
Deputy Chairman, and Richard Becher, Esquire, to 
inspect the authorities, powers, and directions with 




which Mr. Macleano was furnished by Mr. Ilaaiiigs to 
make the propositions contained in his letter of tlie 
10th October, 1776, and to report their opinion tlicre- 
on. And the said committee did accordingly, on the 
23d of tlio said month, report, "that, having con- 
ferred with Mr. Macleane on the subject of his letter 
prcbcnted to the court tlio 11th instant, tliey found, 
that, from the purport of Mr. Hastings's instructions, 
contained in a paper in his own handwriting given 
to Mr. Macleane, and produced by him to tlicni, Mr. 
Hastings declared he would not continue in the gov- 
ernment of Bengal, unless certain conditions there- 
in specified could be obtained, of which they saw no 
probability ; and Mr. George Vansittart had declared 
.0 them, that he was present when these instructions 
were given to Mr. Macleane, and when Mr. Hastings 
empowered Mr. Macleane to declare his resignation 
to the said court ; that Mr. Stewart had likewise con- 
firmed to them, that Mr. Hastings declared to him, 
that he had given directions to the above purpose by 
Mr. Macleane." 

And the Court of Directors, having received from 
the said report due satisfaction respecting the author- 
ity vested in the said Lauchlan Macleane to propose 
the said resignation of the office of Governor-General 
of Bengal, did unanimously resolve to accept the 
same, and did also, under powers vested in the said 
court by the act of the 13th year of his present 
Majesty, "nominate and appoint Edward Wlieler, 
Esquire, to succeed to the office in the Council of 
Fort William in Bengal which will become vacant by 
the said resignation, if f^uch nomination shall be ap- 
proved by his Majesty " : wliich nomination and ap- 
pointment was afterwards in due form approved and 
confirmed by his Majesty. 




A,;T:n,E8 Of CHABOB 



That t! • Cou-t n» nirectors did, by a postscript 
t.) their ^-ncra! !o! r, diited ioth October, 1776, ac- 
quaint UiM (iovenior-Goncral and Council at Calcutta 
of their iiecoptance of the said resignation, of tiieir 
appointiii.nt of Edward Wheler, Esquire, to fill the 
said vacancy, and of his Majesty's approbation of the 
said appointment, togctlier with the grounds of their 
said proceedings ; and did transmit to the said Gov- 
ernor-GLiieral and Council copies of the said instru- 
ments of appointment and coafirmation. 

That the said dispatches from the Court of Direc- 
tors were received at Calcutta, and were read in 
Council on the 19th day of Juno, in the year 1777 ; 
and that Warren Hastings, Esquire, having taken nj 
steps to yield the government to his succosM>r, Gener- 
al Clavoring, and having observed a profound silence 
on tlie subject of the said dis^patches, he, the said 
General Clavering, did, on the next day, being the 
20th of June, by a letter addressed to the said War 
ren Hastings, require him to surrender tiie keys of 
Fort William, and of the Company's treasuries; but 
the said Warren Hastings did positively n fuse ttj 
cmnply witli tho said requisition, " denying that his 
office was vacated, and declaring l,is resolution to 
assert and maintain his authoritv by every leeai 
means." ' "^ ^ 

That the said General Clavering, conceiving that 
the office of ' vernor-General was vacated by the 
arrival of the said dispatches, whi.h acquaint, d the 
Council-General of the resignation of the sai.i War- 
ren Hustings an- the appohitraent of the said Fdward 
Wheler, Esquire, and that he, the said Gc! n.i (^lay- 
ering, liad in consequence thereof ogally .-uccee ■<] 
under ilie provi-ions of tho act of 11: l.?'i, y,.^j. „ .jj 




present Maj.« y's reign, to th. said u!r, of Governor- 
General.lH'c. no vacant in tl. nam Poros. did, 
i» virtue Ihcr of, i^Mi- in In. own ; mo mi mous- 
es, to Ri. liHi.i Barwell, Esquirr and i'liilip i ncis, 
E-uui-e, raeni .era of ilio Cmin. ^ , to attend the une, 
and in tho p. <euci' of ilio said Philip Francis, Es- 
iiuiro, who oiieycd iho siiid sutnmoiiLs did tako the 
oaths'as Govcrnor-» ioneral, and did sit and preside iii 
Council as Gover.Kjr-General, and prepared several 
acts a ad resoluti. i.r- in th- said capacity of Govern, r-, and iid, amon^rst otht-r things, pr. i>aro a 
proclamatlou to be made of his aid successioi. to th'> 
govenunent. lu'l of its commoncuig from the date < 
the said proclamation, 1. it di.l u ^ carry any of tli 
acts or resolutions so {■; ^>ared i; o execution. 

Tho said Warren Hu ng^ ,1, notwi'hstand ne 
thcre^if, and iu pursuancf^ of his resolutio to a> 
and maintain his authority, illegally and unji- stifiii <if 
summon the Council to meet in another uep ?tn it, 
and did it an( preside therein, apart from h*- aid 
General Ciav^ u.gandhis ruuncil,and, in ooh .uotion 
withRiehanl U.rwell, E>quire, who < , rred ;iere- 
in, issued sumiry ord. is and did sun ry ;- u- a guv- 
ernment belonging to the olTicc of G. n .r-Ueneru., 
and, am Mijist thcrs, did order several . ite- ^o be 
written 'le name of the Governor-' • 
Council, and did fcubs< bo the same, oiu- 

maudani of the -arrison of F rt Williau.. tho 

coramaiu. ng officer : t Bnn-ackpor. and tc u. xtm- 
manding officers at tiie otiior stations, and also i the 
provincial ct.uh oils and collectors in the provinces, en- 
joining them severally " to obey no orders excepting 
sucb as should be Mgncd by the^^.iid Warren Hast 
ings, or a lujjori of his Council." 



Timt the said Warren Hastings did, by the said pt,> 

good fauh, constitute a double government, thereby 
destroying and annihilating all government Whatever; 
and, by l„s said orders to the military officers did 
prepare for open resistance by arms, exposing hereby 
the settlement, and all the inhabitants, subjects of or 
depe.,dent on the British government, 'whether na ive 
or European, not only to political distractions, but to 
the horrors of civil war; and did, by exposing the 
dmsions and weakness of the sup eme government 

Bhake the whole foundation of British authority and 
.™,ne„.,^a„aa„ge. .ho ex.te.ce of the BrfSht 

That the said evils were averted only by the mn^ 

nodoubb themselves on the legality of their proceed- 
«gs and the validity of General ClaverinK's S„t 

way bound bylaw to consult the saidjudees who bj 
no egal or judicial authority therein in vSue tf i itir 
offices or as a court of justice, but were consulted and 
.nterposcd their advice, only „ individuals, by .0 
voluntary reference of the parties in the said dLt 

mination to abide by the oplntfl ^d^I ^td 
by the measures he had oreviouslr fnt. J""«7' ^^d 
U. enforce the same by afn.rdM Lf S 2^'!^' 
ous conscuonces above mentioned : which mutS 




taken placo, if the said General Clavering and Philip 
Francis, Esquire, had not been more tender of the 
public interests, and less tenacious of their own 
rights, and had persisted in their claim, as they were 
by law entitled to do, the extra-judicial interposi- 
tion of the judges notwithstanding ; and from which 
claim they re. ^ded only from their desire to preserve 
the peace of tlie settlement, and to prevent the mis- 
chiefs which the illegal resi tance of the said Warren 
Hastings would otherwise infallibly have occasioned. 

That, after the said judges had delivered their 
opinion, " that the place and office of Governor-Gen- 
eral of this Presidency had not yet been vacated by 
Warren Hastings, and that tlie actual assumption of 
the government by the member of the Council next 
in succession to Mr. Hastings, in consequence of any 
deduction which could be made from the papers 
communicated to them, would be absolutely lUega, 
and after the said General Clavering and Philip 
Francis, Esquire, had signified to the said Warren 
Hastings, by a letter dated the 21st of June, "their 
intention to acquiesce in the said opinion of the 
judges," and when the differences in the Supreme 
Council were by these means composed, and the c^ 
lamities consequent thereon were avoided, the said 
Warren Hastings and Richard Barwell, Esquires, did 
once more endanger the public peace and security by 
other illegal, unwarrantable, and unprovoked acts of 
violence: having omitted to summon either the said 
General Clavering or the said Philip Francis, Es- 
quire, to Council; and having, in a Council held 
thus privately and clandestinely and contrary to law, 
on the 22d day of June, come to the following reso- 
lutions, viz. 

' ' v; 






Resolved, Tliat, by the said acts, orders, and 
declarations of Lieutenant-General John Clavering 
recited in the foregoing papers," (meaning the pro-' 
ccedings of General Clavering in his separate Coun- 
cil on the fOth of June,) "he has actually usurped 
and assumed and taken possession of the place and 
office of Governor-General of the Presidency of Fort 
Wilham in Bengal, granted by tlio act of the 13th of 
his present Majesty to Warren Hastings, Esquire. 

" Resolved, That Lieutenant-General John Claver 
ing has thereby relinquished, resigned, surrendered. 
Md vacated the office of Senior Counsellor of Fort 
William 'n Bengal. 

« Resolv. d, Tliat Lieutenant-General John Claver- 
ing has thereby relinquished, resigned, surrendered, 
and vacated his place of Commander-in-Chief of tlie 
Company's forces in Lidia. 

" Resolved, That Richard Barwell. Esquire by vir- 
tue of the said act of Parliament, and by the death 
of the Honorable George Moiison, Esquire, is pro- 
moted to the office of Senior Counsellor of the Presi- 
dency of Fort William in Bengal, in consequence of 
the said relinquishment, resignation, surrender, and 
vacation of General Clavering. 

"Resolved, That the office of Commander-in-Chief 
of the Company's forces in Lidia, by the relinquish- 
ment resignation, surrender, and vacation of Gen- 
eral Clavering, and by the death of the Honorable 
George Monson, Esquire, does no longer exist. 

'Resolved, That, for the preservation of tlie lo- 

gahty of our proceedings, Lieutenant-General John 

Clavering be not in future summoned or adn-itted as 

a member of the Governor-General and Council " 

And the said Warren Hastings and Richard Bar- 

n : 




well, Esquire, did again sit in Council on tlie next 
day, being the 23d of June, without summoning 
either General Clavering or Philip Francis, Esquire, 
and did come to several other resolutions, and make 
several orders, contrary to law or justice, and incon- 
sistent with the tranquillity and the security of tlie 
settlement: that is to say, they ordered their secre- 
tary " to notify to General Clavering that the board 
had declared his offices of Senior Counsellor and 
Co"imander-in-Chief to be vacant, and to furnish him 
with a copy of these proceedings, containing the 
grounds of the board for the aforesaid declaration." 

And they ordered extracts of the said proceedings 
" to be issued in general orders, with letters to all 
the provincial councils and military stations, directing 
them to publish the same in general orders " ; and 
they resolved, " that all military returns be made to 
the Governor-General and Council in their military 
department, until a commander-in-chief shall be ap- 
pointed by the Company." 

That on the day following, that is to say, on the 
24th of June, the said Warren Hastings did again 
omit to summon General Clavering to Council, and 
did again, together with Richard Harwell, Esquire, 
who concurred therein, adhere to and confirm the 
said illegal resolutions come to on the two former 
days, declaring " that they could not be retracted 
but by the present authority of the law or by future 
orders from home," and aggravating tlie guilt of the 
said unjustifiable acts by declaring, as the said War- 
ren Hastings did, " that they were not the precipitate 
effects of an instant and passionate impulse, but the 
fruits of long and most temperate deliberations, of 
inevitable necessity, of the strictest sense of public 

vot. IX. 4 






duty, and of a conviction equal in its impression on 
his mind to absolute certainty." 

That the said Warren Hastings was the less excus- 
able in this obstinate adherence to his former unjust 
proceeduigs, as the said declarations were made in 
answer to a motion made by PhUip Francis, Esquire, 
for the reversal of the said proceedings, and to a 
minute introducing the said motion, in which Mr. 
Francis set forth in a clear and forcible manner, and 
in terms with which the Court of Directors have since 
declared their entire concurrence, both the extreme 
danger and the illegality and invalidity of the said 
proceedings of Warren Hastings and Richard Bar- 
well, Esquire, concluding the said minute by the 
following conciliatory declaration: «'And that this 
salutary motion may not be impeded by any idea or 
suspicion that General Clavering may do any act 
inconsistent with the acquiescence which both he and 
I have avowed in the decision of the judges, I will 
undertake to answer for him in this respect, or that, 
if he should depart from the true spirit and meaning 
of that acquiescence, I will not be a party with him in 
such proceedings." 

That the said Warren Hastings could not plead 
ignorance of the law in excuse for the said illegal acts, 
as it appears from the proceedings of the four preced- 
ing days that he was well acquainted with the tenure 
by which the members of the Council held their offi- 
ces under the act of the 13th of his present Majesty, 
and had stated the same as a ground for retaining his 
own office, contrary to an express declaration of the 
Court of Directors and an instrument under the sign- 
manual of his Majesty ; and the judges of the Supreme 
Court, in their reasons for their decision in his favor, 


"^^^~~ ■'.'agg' 




had stated the provisions in the said act,* so far as 
they related to the matter in dispute, from which it 
appeared that there were but four grounds on which 
the office of any member of the Council could be 
vacated, — namely, death, removal, resignation, or 
promotion. And as the act confined the power of 
removal to "his Majesty, his heirs and successors, 
upon representation made by the Court of Directors 
of the said United Company for the time being," and 
conferred no such power on the Governor-General, or 
a majority of the Council, to remove, on any ground 
or for any cause whatever, one of their colleagues, — 
so, granting the claim of General Clavering to the 
chair, and his acts done in furtherance thereof, to 
have been illegal, and criminal in whatever degree, 
yet it did not furnish to the rest of the Council any 
ground to remove him from his officr of Counsellor 
under the provisions of the said act ; and there could 
therefore remain only his resignation or promotion, as 
a possible means of vacating his said office. But with 
regard to the promotion of General Clavering to the 
office of Governor-General, although he claimed it 
himself, yet, as Mr. Hastings did not admit it, and as 
in fact it was even receded from by General Clavering, 
it could not be considered, at least by Mr. Hastings, 
as a valid ground for vacating his office of Senior 
Counsellor, since the act requires for that purpose, 
not a rejected claim, but an actual and effectual pro- 
motion ; and General Clavering's office of Counsellor 
could no more be vacated by such a naked claim, 
unsupported and disallowed, than the seat of a mem- 
ber of the House of Commons could be vacated, and 
a new writ issued to supply tlie vacancy, by his claim 

• 13 Geo. III. c. 6.3, § 10. 








to the office of Steward of the Chiltem Hundreds, 
when his Majesty has refused to appoint him to the 
said office. And with regard to resignation, although 
the said Warren Hastings, as a color to his illegal 
resolutions, had affectedly introduced the word " re- 
signed " amongst those of" relinquished, surrendered, 
and Tacated," yet he well knew that General Clarer- 
ing had made no offer nor declaration of his resig- 
nation of his offices of Senior Counsellor and Com- 
mander-in-Chief, and that he did not claim the of- 
fice of QoTemor-General on the ground of any such 
resignation made by himself, but on the ground of a 
resignation made by the said Warren Hastings, which 
resignation the said Warren Hastings did not admit ; 
and the use of the term resigned on that occasion was 
therefore a manifest and wilful misconstruction and 
misapplication of the words of the act of his present 
Majesty. And such misinterpretation and false exten- 
sion of the term of resignation was the more indecent 
in the said Warren Hastings, as he was at the same 
moment disavowing and refusing to give effect to his 
own clear and express resignation, according to the 
true intent and meaning of the word as used in the 
said act, made by his agent, duly authorized and in- 
structed by himself so to do, to an authority compe- 
tent to receive and accept the same. 

That, although the said Warren Hastings did after- 
wards recede from the said illegal measures, in com- 
pliance with the opinion and advice of the judges 
again interposed, and did thereby avoid the guilt of 
such further acts and the blame of such ftirther evils 
as must have been consequent on a persistence there- 
in, yet he was nevertheless still guilty of the illegal 
acts above described ; and the same are great crimes 
and misdemeanors. 




That, although the judges did decide that the of- 
fice of Governor-Oeneral, held by the said Warren 
Hastings, was not ipso facto and instanter vacated by 
the arrival of the said dispatches and documents trans- 
mitted by the Court of Directors, and did consider the 
said consequences of the resignation as awaiting some 
future act or event for its complete and effectual op- 
eration, yet the said judges did not declare any opin- 
ion on the ultimate invalidity of the said acts of 
Lauchlan Macleane, Esquire, as not being binding 
on his principal, Warren Hastings, Esquire ; nor did 
they declare any opinion that the obligation of the 
said resignation was not from the beginning conclu- 
sive and effectual, although its operation was, from 
the necessity of the case, on recount of the distance 
between England and India, to take place only in 
future, — or that the said resignation made by Lauch- 
lan Macleane, Esquire, was only an offer or proposal 
of a resignation to be made at some future and indef- 
inite period, or a mere intimation of the desire of 
Warren Hastings, Esquire, to resign at some future 
and indefinite period, and that the said resignation, 
notwithstanding the acceptance thereof by the Court 
of Directors, and the regular appointment and con- 
firmation of a successor, was still to remain optional 
in the said Warren Hastings, to be ratified or depart- 
ed from at his future choice or pleasure ; nor did the 
said judges pronounce, nor do any of their reasonings 
which accompanied their decision tend to establish it 
as their opinion, that even the time for ratifying and 
completing the said transaction was to be at the sole 
discretion of the said Warren Hastings ; but they 
only delivered their opinion as aforesaid, that his said 
office " has not i/et been vacated, and [therefore] that 

. •, 



the actiial assumption of the goTernmeut by the mem- 
ber of the Council next in succession was [in the act- 
ual circumstances, and rebus tic stantilmt] illegal." 

That the said Warren Hastings does nowhere him- 
self contend that the said resignation was not abso- 
lute, but optional, according to the true meaning and 
understanding of the parties in England, and so far 
as the acts of Lauchlan Macleane, Esquire, and the 
Court of Directors, were binding on him ; but, on the 
contrary, he grounds his refusal to complete the same, 
not on any interpretation of the words in which the 
said resignation, and the other instruments aforesaid, 
were conceived, but rather on a disavowal (not direct, 
iudeed, but implied) of his said agent, and of the 
powers under which the said agent had claimed to 
act in his behalf. Neither did the said Warren Hast- 
ings ground his said refusal on any objection to the 
particular day or period or circumstances in which 
the requisition of General Claverii.g was made, nor 
accompany the said refusal with any qualification in 
that respect, or with any intimation tiiat he would at 
any future or more convenient season comply with 
the same, — although such an intimation might proba- 
bly have induced General Clavering to waive an in- 
stant and immediate claim to the chair, and might 
therefore have prevented the distractions which hap- 
pened, and the greater evils which impended, in con- 
sequence of the said claim of General Clavering, and 
the said refusal of Warren Hastmgs, Esquire; but 
the said Warren Hastings did, on the contrary, ex- 
press his said refusal in such general and unqualified 
terms as intimated an intention to resist absolutely 
and altogether, both then and at any future time, the 
said requisition of General Clavering. And the sub- 




sequent proceedings of tlie said Warren Hastings do 
all concur in proving that such was his intention ; for 
he did afterwards, in conformity to the advice of the 
judges, move a resolution in Council, " that all parties 
be placed in the same situation in which they stood 
before the receipt of the last advices from England, 
reserving and submitting to a decision in England the 
respective claims that each party may conceive they 
have a right to make, but not acting upon those 
claims till such decision shall arrive in Bengal": 
thereby clearly and explicitly declaring that it was 
not his intention to surrender the government until 
Buch decision should arrive in Bengal, which could 
not be expected in less time than a year and a half 
after the date of the said resolution ; and thereby 
clearly and explicitly declaring that he did not con- 
sider his re&ignation as binding for the present. And 
the said intention was manifested, if possible, still 
more directly and expressly in a letter written by the 
said Warren Hastings to the Court of Directors, dated 
the 15th of August, 1777, being almost two months 
after the receipt of the said dispatches, in which the 
said Warren Hastings declares that "he did not hold 
himself bound by the notification made by Mr. Mac- 
leane, nor by any of the acts consequent of it." 

Tliat, such appearing to have been the intention of 
the said Warren Hastings, General Clavering was jus- 
tified ill immediately assuming the government, with- 
out waiting for any future act of the said Warren 
Hastings for the actual surrender of the said govern- 
ment, none such being likely to happen ; and Philip 
Francis, Esquire, was justified in supporting General 
Clavering in the same on the soundest principles of 
justice, and on a maxim icceived in courts of equity, 






f ' '*'• •' • 1 

* j 






namely, that uo one shall avail himself of lii<i own 
wrong, — and that, if any one refuse or neglect to 
perform that which he is bound to do, the rights of 
others shall not be prejudiced thereby, but such acts 
shall be deemed and reputed to have been actually 
performed, and all the consequences shall be en- 
forced which would have followed from such actual 
performance. And therefore the resolutions moved 
and voted in Council by the said Warren Hastings, 
declaiing the offices of General Clavering to be va- 
cant, were not only illegal, inasmuch as the said 
Warren Hastings had no authority to warrant such a 
declaration, even on the supposition of the acts of 
General Clavering being contrary to law, but the said 
resolutions wore further highly culpable and criminal, 
inasmuch as the said acts done by General Clavering, 
which were made the pretence of that proceeding, 
were strictly regular and legal. 

That the refusal of the said Warren Hastings to 
ratify the said resignation, and liis disavowal of the 
said Lauchlan Macleane, his agent, is not justified by 
anything contained in his said letter to the Court of 
Directors, dated on the 15th of August, 1777,— the 
said Warren Hastings nowhere directly and positively 
asserting that tlie said Lauclilan Macleane was not 
his agent, and had not both full and general powers, 
and even particular instructions for this very act, 
although the said Warren Hastings uses many in- 
direct and circuitous, but insufficient and inapplicar 
ble, insinuations to that effect. And the said letter 
does, on the contrary, contain a clear and express 
avowal that the said Lauchlan Macleane was his con- 
fidential agent, and that in that capacity he acted 
throughout, and particularly in this special matter, 



with zeal and fidelity. And the said letter does fur- 
thor admit in effect the iustructious produced by the 
Baid Lauchlan M deaue, Esquire, confirmed by Mr. 
Vansittart and I a Stewart, aiid relied on and con- 
fided in by the Court of Directors, by which the said 
Lauchlan Macleaue appeared to be specially empow- 
ered to declare the said resignation, the words of 
tlie said instruction being as follows: « That ho [Mr. 
Hastings] will not continue in the yovemment of Ben- 
gal, unless certain conditions therein specified can 
be obtahied" ; and tlie words of the said letter beuig 
as follows: "What I myself know with certainty, or 
can recollect at this disUnce of time, concerning the 
powers and instructions which were given to Mes- 
sieurs Macleaue and Graham, when they undertook 
to be ray agents in England, I will circumstantially 
relate. I am in possession of two papers which were 
presented to those gentlemen at the time of their 
departure from Beng.-l, one of which comprises four 
short propositions which. I required a» the conditions of 
my being confirmed in this government." And although 
the Kiid Warren Hastings does here artfully some- 
what change the words of his written instructions 
(and which having in liis possession he might as 
easily have given verbatim) to other words winch 
may appear less explicit, yet they aro in fact capable 
of only the same meaning : for, as, at the time of giv- 
iug the said instructions to his agents, he was in full 
possession of his office, he could want no confirmation 
therein except hi» own; and, in such circumstances, 
'' to require certain things, as the conditions of his be- 
ing confirmed in his government," is tantamount to a 
declaration " that he will not continue in hisgovemr 
rnrnt, unlegs those conditions can be obtained." And 


, « ---;' 




i ' 

the said attempt at prevarication can serve its author 
the less, as either both sentences have une and tite 
same meaning, or, if their meaning be different, the 
original instructions in his own handwriting, or, in 
other words, the thing itself, must be preferred as 
evidence of its contents to a loose statement of its 
purport, founded, perhaps, on a loose recollection of 
it at a great distance of time, 

Tliat the said refus^al of Warien Hastings, Esquire, 
was a breach of faith wiili the Court of Directors aud 
his Majesty's ministers in England ; as the said resig- 
nation was not merely a voluntary offer without any 
consideration, and therefore subject to be ret ; ;ip,i or 
retracted at the pleasure of the said Warre>i Hast- 
ings, but ought rather to be considered as having 
been the result of a negotiation carried on bet.sreea 
Mr. Macleane for the benefit of Warren Hastings, 
Esquire, on the one hand, and by the Court of Direc- 
tors for the interests of the Company on the other: 
which view of the transaction will appear the more 
probable, when it is considered that at the time of the 
said resignation a strict inquiry had been carrying on 
by the Court of Directors into the conduct of the said 
Warren Hastings, aud the solicitor and counsel to the 
Company, and other eminent counsel, had given it as 
their opinions, on cases stated to them, that there 
were grounds for suing the said Warren Hastings 
in the courts of law aud equity, and that the Com- 
pany would be entitled to recover in the said suits 
against Warren Hastings, Esquire, several very large 
sums of money taken by him in his office of Govern- 
or-General, contrary to law, and in breach of his cov- 
enaiits, and of his duty to the Company aud the pub- 
lic; and the Court of Directors had also come to 



variuus severe resolutions of . t;us\iro against the said 
Wunon Hastings, and amonK>t oihcrs to a resolution 
to ruciill the said Warren IT -mi igs, and remove him 
from his office of Oovernor-Gfueral, t > Ui \ t for 
sundry great crimes and delinquencie-, hy hini com- 
mitted iu his said office. And on tlif • ucconuts it 
ii(<pears probaule that the said rcsignuti m \v;i~ tou- 
di' '1 and accepted as a consideration for some bene- 
ficial concessions made in consequence there.. f t . the 
p;iid Warren Hastings iu his said dangerous ;nid des- 
pci to condition. 

And the said refusal was also an act of groat disre- 
spect to the Court of Directors anil to his Majesty, 
and, by rendering abortive their said measures, sol- 
emnly and deliberately taken, and ratified and con- 
firmed by his Majesty, tended to bri: g the authority 
of the Court of Directors and of his Majesty into con- 

And the said refusal was an injury to General 

Auti was also, or might have been, a great injury 
to Edward Wheler, Esquire. 

Autl was an act of signal treachery to Lauchlan 
Maclcane, Esquire, as also to Mr. Vansittar? and Mr. 
Stewart, wh o honors and veracity were thereby 
brought into question, doubt, and suspicion. 

And the said refusal was prejudicial to the affairs of 
the servants of tlie Company in India, by shaking the 
confidence to be placed in tleir agents by those persons 
with whom it might be i., their interests to negotiate 
on any matter of importance, and by thus subjecting 
the communication of persons abroad with those at 
home to difficulties not known before. 





That the said Warren Hastings, in the year 1777, 
did grant to the Surgeon-G^eneral a contract for three 
years, for defraying every kind of hospital and medi- 
cinal expense, — not only in breach of the general 
orders of the Court of Directors with respect to the 
duration of contracts, but in direct opposition to a 
particular order of the Court of Directors, of the 30th 
of March, 1774, when they directed " that the Surgeon 
should not be permitted to enjoy any emolument aris- 
ing from his being concerned in dieting the patients, 
and that the occupations of surgeon and contractor 
should be forthwith separated." That the said con- 
tract was in itself highly improper, and inconsistent 
with the good of the service ; as it afforded the great- 
est temptation to abuse, and established a pecuniary 
interest in the Surgeon-Gteneral, contrary to the duties 
of his station and profession. 


That the Governor-General and Council at Fort 
William did, on the motion and recommendation of 
Warren Hastings, Esquire, enter into a contract with 
Archibald Frazer, Esquire, on the 16th of April, 1778, 
for the repairs of the pools and banks in the province 
of Burdwan, for two years, at the rate of 120,000 sicca 
rpees for the first year, and 80,000 rupees for the 
second year. 

That ou the 19th of December, 1778, the said War^ 
ren Hastings did further persuade the Supreme Coun- 
cil to prolong the term of the above contract with 

m.^ ii 




Archibald Frazer for the space of three years more on 
the same conditions, namely, the payment of 80,000 
sicca rupees for each year: to which was added a 
permission to Mr. Frazer to make dobunda, or special 
repairs, whenever he should judge them necessary, at 
the charge of government. 

That the said contracts, both in the manner of their 
acceptance by the Supreme Council, without having 
previously advertised for proposals, and in the extent 
of their duration, were made in direct violation of the 
special orders of the Court of Directors. 

That, so far from any advantage having been ob- 
tained for the Company in the terms of these contracts, 
in consideration of the length of time for which they 
were to continue, the expense of government upon 
this article was increased by these engagements to a 
very great amount. 

Tliat it appears that this contract had been held tor 
some years before by the Rajah of Burdwan at the rate 
of 25,000 rupees per annum. 

That the superintendent of poolbundy repairs, after 
an accurate and diligent survey of the bunds and 
pools, and the Provincial Council of Burdwan, upon 
the best information they could procure, had delivered 
it as their opinion to the Gk)vemor-General and Coun- 
cil, before the said agreement was entered into, that, 
after the heavy expense stated in Mr. Kinlock's esti- 
mate, viz., 119,405 sicca rupees, if disbursed as they 
recommended, the charge in future seasons would be 
gi-eatly reduced, and, after one thorough and effectual 
repair, they cmceived a small annual expense would 6« 
sufficient to keep the bunds up and prevent their going to 

That, whatever extraordinary and unusual damages 





the pools and bunds might hare sustained, eitfter from 
the neglect of the Rajah's officers, or from the violence 
of the then late rains, and the torrents thereby occa- 
sioned, to justify the expense of the first year, yet, as 
they were all considered and included in the estimate 
for that year, theie could be no pretence for allowing 
and continuing so large and burdensome a payment 
as 80,000 rupees per annum for the four succeeding 

That the said Warren Hastings did, in his minutes 
of the 13th of February, 1778, himself support that 
opinion, in the comparison to be made between Mr. 
Thomson's proposals, of undertaking the same service 
for 60,000 rupees a year for nine years, and the terms 
of Mr. Frazer's contracts : preferring the latter, be- 
cause these were " to effect a complete repair, which 
could hardly be concluded in one season, and the sub- 
sequent expense would be but trifling." 

Xotwithstanding which, the said Warren Hastings 
urged and prevailed upon the Council to allow in the 
first year the full amount proposed by Mr. Kinlock in 
his estimate of the necessary repairs, and did burden 
the Company with what he must have deemed to be, 
for the greater part, an unnecessary expense of 80,000 
rupees per annum for four years. 

That the permission granted to Mr. Frazer to make 
dobunds, or new and additional embankments in aid 
of the old ones, whenever he should judge them 
necessary, at the charge of government, (the said 
charge to be verified by the oath of the said Frazer, 
witliout any voucher,) was a power very much to be 
suspected, and very improper to be intrusted to a 
contractor who had already covenanted to keep the 
old pools in perfect repair, and to construct new ones 



wherever the old pools had been broken down and 
washed away, or where the course of the rivers might 
have rendered new ones necessary, in consideration 
or the great sums stipulated to be paid to him by the 

That the grant of the foregoing contracts, and the 
permission afterwards annexed to the second of the 
said grants, become much more reprehensible from a 
consideration of the circumstances of the person to 
whom such a grant was made. 

That the due performance of the service required 
local knowledge and experience, which the said Archi- 
bald Frazer, being an officer in the Supreme Court 
of Justice, could not have possessed. 


That it appears that the opium produced in Bengal 
and Bahar is a considerable and lucrative article in 
the export trade of those provinces ; that the whole 
produce has been for many years monopolized either 
by individuals or by the government ; that the Court 
of Directors of the East India Company, in considera- 
tion of the hardship imposed on the native owners 
and cultivators of the lands, who were deprived of 
their natural right of dealing with many competitors, 
and compelled to sell the produce of their labor to a 
single monopolist, did authorize the Governor-General 
and Council to give np that commodity as an article 
of commerce. 

That, wliile the said commodity continued to be a 
monopoly for the benofit of government, and managed 
by a contractor, the contracts for providing it were 



I (i\ 

subject to the Company's fundamental regulation, 
namely, to be put up to auction, and disposed of to the 
best bidder ; and that the Company particularly or- 
dered that the commodity, when provided, should be 
consigned to the Board of Trade, who were directed 
to dispose thereof by public auction. 

That in May, 1777, the said Warren Hastings 
granted to John Mackenzie a contract for the pro- 
vision of opium, to continue three years, and without 
advertising for proposals. That this transaction was 
condemned by the Court of Directors, notwithstanding 
a clause had been inserted in that contract by which 
it was left open to the Court of Directors to annul the 
same at the expiration of the first or second year. 

That, about the end of the year 1780, the said War- 
ren Hastings, in contradiction to the order above 
mentioned, did take away the sale of the opium from 
the Board of Trade, though he disclaimed, at the 
same time, any intention of implying a censure on their 

That in March, 1781, the said Warren Hastings 
did grant to Stephen Sulivan, son of Lawrence Suli- 
van. Chairman of the Court of Directors of the East 
India Company, a contract for the provision of opium, 
without advertising for proposals, and without even 
receiving any written proposals from him, the said 
Sulivan ; that he granted this contract for four years, 
and at the request of the said Sulivan did omit that 
clause whicii was inserted in the preceding contract, 
and by which it was rendered liable to be determined 
by orders from the Company: the said Warren Hast- 
ings declaring, contrary to truth, that such clause was 
now unnecessary, as the Directors had approved the 




Tliat the said Sulivan had been but a few months 
in Bengal when the above contract was given to him ; 
that he was a stranger to the country, and to all the 
local commerce thereof, and therefore unqualified for 
the management of such a concern ; and that the 
said Sulivan, instead of executing the contract him- 
self, did, shortly after obtaining the same, assign it 
over to John Benn and others, and in consideration 
of such assignment did receive from the said Benn a 
great sum of money. 

That from the preceding facts, as well as from 
sundry other circumstances of restrictions taken oflF 
(particularly by abolishing the office of inspector into 
the quality of the opium) and of bejieficial clauses 
introduced, it appears that the said "Warren Hastings 
gave this contract to the said Stephen Sulivan in con- 
tradiction to the orders of the Court of Directors, and 
without any regard to the interests of the India 
Company, for the sole purpose of creating an instant 
fortune for the said Sulivan at the expense of the 
India Company, without any claim of service or pre- 
tence of merit on his part, and without any apparent 
motive whatever, except that of securing or reward- 
ing the attachment and support of his father, Law- 
rence Sulivan, a person of great authority and influ- 
ence in the direction of the Company's affairs, and 
notoriously attached to and connected with the said 
Warren Hastings. 

That the said Stephen Sulivan neither possessed 
nor pretended to possess any skill in the business of 
his contract ; that he exerted no industry, nor showed 
or could show any exactness, in the performance of it, 
since he immediately sold the contract for a sum of 
money to another person, (for the sole purpose of 





! ! 

which sale it must be presumed the same was given,) 
by which person another profit was to be made ; and 
by that person the same was again sold to a third, by 
whom a third profit was to be made. ^ 

Tliat the said Warren Hastings, at the very time 
when he engaged tlie Company in a contract for en« 
grossing tlie whole of the opium produced in Ben* 
gal and Bahar in the ensuing four years on terms of 
such exorbitant profit to the contractor, affirmed, that 
" there was little prospect of selling the opium in 
Bengal at a reasonable price, and that it was but 
natural to suppose that the price of opium would fall, 
from the demand being lessened " ; that in a letter 
dated the 5th of May, 1781, he informed the Direc- 
tors, " that, owing to the indiflferent state of the 
marlccts last season to the Eastward, and the very 
enhanced rates of insurance which the war had occa- 
sioned, they had not been able to dispose of the opium 
of the present year to so great an advantage as they 
expected, and that more than one half of it remained 
still in their warehouses." That the said Warren 
Hastings was guilty of a manifest breach of trust to 
his constituents and his employers in monopolizing, 
for their pretended use, an article of commerce for 
which he declared no purchasers had offered^ and that 
there was little prospect of any offering, and the price of 
which, he said, it was but natural to suppose would fall. 

That the said Warren Hastings, having, by his 
own act, loaded the Company with a commodity for 
which, either in the ordinary and regular course of 
public auction, or even by private contract, there was, 
as he affirmed, no sale, did, under pretence of find- 
ing a market for the same, engage the Company in 
an enterprise of great and certain expense, subject to 

' sS 


mu rm i UKmammmr * 

-■■-^ ' 



a manifest risk, and full of disgrace to the East India 
Company, not only in their political character, as a 
great sovereign power in India, but in their commer- 
cial character, as an eminent and respectable body of 
merchants ; and that the execution of this enterprise 
was accompanied with sundry other engagements 
with other persons, in all of which the Company's 
interest was constantly sacrificed to that of individ- 
uals favored by the said Warren Hastings. 

That the said Warren Hastings first engaged in a 
scheme to export one thousand four hundred and 
sixty chests of opium, on the Company's account, on 
board a ship belonging to Cudbert Thornhill, half of 
which was to be disposed of in a coasting voyage, and 
the remainder in Canton. That, besides the freight 
and commission payable to the said Tliornhill on this 
adventure, twelve pieces of cannon belonging to the 
Company were lent for arming the ship ; though his 
original proposal was, that the sliip should be armed 
at his expense. That this part of the adventure, 
depending for its success on a prudent and fortu- 
nate management of various sales and resales in the 
course of a circuitous voyage, and being exposed to 
such rislc both of sea and enemy that all private trad- 
ers had declined to be concerned in it, was particu- 
larly unfit for a great trading company, and could 
not be undertaken on their account with any rational 
prospect of advantage. 

That the said Warren Hastings soon after engaged 
in another scheme for exporting two thousand chests 
of opium directly to China on the Company's ac- 
count, and for that purpose accepted of an offer made 
by Henry Watson, the Company's chief engineer, to 
convey the same in a vessel of liis own, and to deliver 

Ktli I 










it to the Company's supra-cargoes. That, after the 
offer of the said Henry Watson had been accepted, a 
letter from him was produced at the board, in which 
he declared that he was nnable to equip the ship with 
a proper number of cannon, and requested that he 
might be furnished with thirty-six guns from the 
Company's stores at Madras ; with which request the 
board complied. 

That it appears that George Williamson, the Com- 
pany's auctioneer at Calcutta, having complained that 
by this mode of exporting the opium, which used 
to be sold by public auction, he lost his commission 
as auctioneer, the board allowed him to draw a com- 
mission of one per cent on all the opium which had 
been or was to be exported. That it appears that 
the contractor for opium (whose proper duties and 
emoluments as contractor ended with the delivery of 
the opium) was also allowed to draw a commission 
on the opium then shipping on the Company's ac- 
count ; but for what reason, or on what pretence, 
does not appear. 

That the ''aid Warran Hastings, in order to pay 
the said Stephen Sulivan in advance for the opium 
furnished or to be furnished by him in the first year 
of his contract, did borrow the sum of twenty lacs of 
rupees -t eight per cent, or two hundred thousand 
pounds sterling, to be repaid by drafts to be drawn 
on the Company by their supra-cargoes in Cliina, pro- 
vided the opium consigned to them should arrive 
safe ; but that, if the ar^venture failed, wliether by 
the loss of the ships or otlierwise, the subscribers to 
the above loan were to be repaid their capital and 
interest out of the Company's treasury in Bengal. 

That the said Warren Hastings, having in this 



manner purchased a commodity for which he said 
there was no sale, and paid for it with money which 
he was obliged to borrow at a high interest, was 
still more criminal in his attempt, or pretended plan, 
to introduce it clandestinely into China. That the 
importation of opium into China is forbidden by the 
Chinese government ; that the opium, on seizure, is 
burnt, the vessel that imports it confiscated, and the 
Chinese in whose possession it may bo foimd for sale 
punished with death. 

That the Governor-General and Council were well 
aware of the existence of these prohibitions and pen- 
alties, and did therefore inform the supra-cargccs in 
Cliina, that the ship belonging to the said Henry 
Watson would enter the river at China as an armed 
ship, and would twt he reported as hearing a cargo of 
opium, that heing a contraband trade. 

That, of the above two ships, the first, belonging to 
Cudbert Thornhill, was taken by the French; and 
that the second, arriving in China, did occasion much 
embarrassment and distress to the Company's supra- 
cargoes there, who had not l>een previo'isly consulted 
on the formation of the plan, and were exposed to 
great difficulty and hazard in the execution of their 
part of it. That the ship was delayed, at a demur- 
rage of an hundred dollars a day, for upwards of 
three months, waiting in vain for a better market. 
The factory estimate the loss to the Company, in- 
cluding port charges, demurrage, and factory cliarges 
allowed the captain, at sixty-nine thousand nine hun- 
dred and ninety-three dollars, or about twenty thou- 
sand pounds sterling. 

Tliat the Company's factory at China, after stating 
the foregoing facts to the Court of Directors, uonclude 







>i ' 



with the following general observation thereon. "On 
a review of these circumstances, with the extravac 
gant and tmusual terms of the freight, demurrage, 
factory charges, Ac, Ac, we cannot help being of 
opinion that private considerations have been suf- 
fered to interfere too much for any benefit that may 
have been intended to the Honorable Company. 
We hope for the Honorable Court's approbation of 
our conduct in this affair. Tlie novelty and nature 
of the consignments have been the source of much 
trouble and anxiety, and, though we wished to have 
had it in our power to do more, we may truly say 
wo have exceeded our expectations." 

That every part of this transaction, from the mo- 
nopoly witli which it commenced, to the contraband 
dealing with which it concluded, criminates tlie said 
Warren Hastings witl wilful disobedience of orders 
and a continued breach of trust ; that every stop taken 
in it was attended with heavy loss to the Company, 
and with a sacrifice of their interest to that of individ- 
uals ; and that, if finally a profit haa resulted to the 
Company from such a transaction, no profit attending 
it could compensate for the probable risk to which 
their trade in China was thereby exposed, or for the 
certain dishonor and consequent distrust Ahich the 
East India Company must incur in the eyes of Vtc 
Chinese government by being engaged in a low. lai - 
destine traflSc, prohibited by the laws of the country. 



That in the month of February, 1781, Mr. Richard 
Joseph tiulivan. Secretary to the Select Committee 





at Fort Pt. George, applied to them for leave to pro- 
ceed to Calcutta on Aw pn ate affairt. That, being 
the confidentiul secretary to the Select Committee at 
Fort St. George, and consequently possessed of all the 
views and secrets of the Company, as far as they re- 
lated to that government, he went privately into the 
service of the Nabob of Arcot, and, under the pretence 
of proceeding to Calcutta on his private business, un- 
dertook a commission from the said Nabob to the 
Governor-General and Council, to negotiate with them 
in favor of certain projects of the said Nabob which 
had been reprobated by the Company, 

That the said Sulivan was soon after appointed 
back again by the said Warren Hastings to the office 
of Resident at the Durbar of the said Nabob of Arcot. 
That it was a high crime and misdemeanor in the 
said Hastings to encourage so dangerous an example 
in the Company's service, and to interfere unnecessa- 
rily with the government of Madras in the discharge 
of the duties peculiarly ascribed to them by the prac- 
tice and orders of the Company, for the purpose of 
appointing to a great and confidential situation a man 
who had so recently committed a breach of trust to 
his employers. 

That the Court of Directors, in their letter to Ben- 
gal, dated the 12th of July, 1782, and received there 
on tlie 18th of February, 1783, did condemn and revoke 
the said appointment. That the said Directors, in 
theirs to Fort St. George, dated the 28th of August, 
1782, and received there the 31st of January, 1783, 
did liighly condemn the conduct of the said Sulivan, 
and, ill order to deter their servants from practices 
of tlie same kind, did di»mis8 him from their service. 
That the said Hastings, knowing that the said Suli- 








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van's appointment had been condemned and revoked 
by the Court of Directors, and pretending that on the 
loth of March, 1783, he did not know that the said 
Sulivan was dismissed from the Company's service, 
though that fact was known at Madras on the 81st of 
the preceding January, did recommend the said Suli- 
van to be ambassador at the court of Nizam Ali Khan, 
Subahdar of the Deccan, in defiance of the authority 
and orders of the Court of Directors. 

That, even admitting, what is highly improbable, 
that the dismission of the said Sulivan from the ser- 
vice of the said Company was not known at Calcutta 
in forty-three days from Madras, the last-mentioned 
nomination of the said Sulivan was made a^ least 
in contempt of the censure already expressed by the 
Court of Directors at his former appointment to the 
Durbar of the Nabob of Arcot, and which was certain- 
ly known to the said Hastings. 


That on the 2d of December, 1779, the Governor- 
General and Council of Fort William, at the special 
recommendation and instance of Warren Hastings, 
Esquire, then Governor-General, and contrary to the 
declared opinion and protest of three of the members 
of the Council, viz., Philip Francis and Edward Whe- 
ler, Esquires, who were present, and of Sir Eyre Coote, 
who was absent, ( by whose absence the casting voice 
of the said Warren Hastings, Esquire, prevailed,) did 
conclude a treaty of perpetual friendship and alliance, 
offensive and defensive, with a Hindoo prince, called 
the Rauna of Gohud, for the express purpose of using 




the forces of the said Banna in opposition to the Mah- 

That, among other articles, it was stipulated with 
the said Ranna by the said Warren Hastings, " that, 
whenever peace should be concluded between the Com- 
pany and the Mahratta state, the Maha Rajah should 
be included as a party in the treaty which t ould be 
made for that purpose, and his present possessions, 
together with the fort of Gualior, which of old be- 
longed to the family of the Maha Rajah, if it should be 
then in his possession, and such countries as he should 
have acquired in the course of war, and which it 
should then be stipulated to leave in his hands, should 
be guarantied to him by such treaty." 

That, in the late war against the Mahrattas, the said 
Ranna of Gohud did actually join the British army 
under the command of Colonel Muir with two battal- 
ions of infantry and twelve hundred cavalry, and did 
then serve in person against the Mahrattas, thereby 
affording material assistance, and rendering essential 
service to the Company. 

That, in conformity to the above-mentioned treaty, 
in the fourth article of the treaty of peace concluded 
on the 13th of October, 1781, between Colonel Muir, 
on the part of the English Company, and Mahdajee 
Sindia, the Mahratta general, the said Ranna of Go- 
hud was expressly included. 

That, notwithstanding the said express provision 
and agreement, Mahdajee Sindia proceeded to attack 
the forts and lay waste the territories of the said Ranna, 
and did undertake and prosecute a war against him 
for the space of two years, in the course of which the 
Ranna and his family were reduced to extreme distress, 
and in the end he was deprived of his forts, and the 



L< 1 


whole not only of his acquired possessions, but of his 
original dominions, so specially guarantied to him by 
the British government in both the above-mentioned 

That the said Warren Hastings was duly and regu- 
larly informed of the progress of the war against the 
Ranna, and of every event thereof ; notwithstanding 
which, he not only neglected in any manner to inter- 
fere therein in favor of the said Ranna, or to use any 
endeavors to prevent the infraction of the treaty, but 
gave considerable countenance and encouragement to 
Mahdajee Sindia in his violation of it, both by the 
residence of the British minister in the Mahratta camp, 
and by the approbation shown by the said Warren 
Hastings to the promises made by his agent of observ- 
ing the strictest neutrality, notwithstanding he was in 
justice bound, and stood pledged by the most solemn 
and sacred engagements, to protect and preserve the 
said Ranna from those enemies, whose resentment he 
had provoked only by his adherence to the interests 
of the British nation. 

That, in the only attempt made to sound the dis- 
position of Mahdajee Siudia relative to a pacification 
between him and the Ranna of Gohud, on the 14th 
of May, 1783, Mr. Anderson, in obedience to the 
orders he had received, did clearly and explicitly 
declare to Bhow Bucksey, the minister of Malidajee 
Sindia, the sentiments of the said Warren Hastings 
in the words following : " That it was so far from 
your [the said Hastings's] meaning to intercede in his 
[the said Ranna's] favor, that I only desired him to 
sound Sindia's sentiments, and, in case he was desir- 
ous of peace, to mention what I had said ; but if he 
seemed to prefer carrying on the war, I begged that 




he would not mention a syllable of what had passed, 
but let the matter drop entirely." 

That it afterwards appeared, in a minute of the said 
Hastings in Council at Fort William, on the 22d of 
September, 1783, that he promised, at the instance of 
a member of the Council, to write to Lieutenant James 
Anderson in favor of the Rauna of Gohud, and lay 
his letter before the board. 

That, nevertheless, the said Hastings, professing 
not to recollect his said promise, did neglect to write 
a formal letter to Lieutenant Anderson in favor of the 
said Banna of Gohud, and that the private letter, the 
extract of which the said Hastings did lay i)efore the 
board on the 21st of October, 1783, so far from di- 
recting any effectual interference in favor of the said 
Ranna, or commanding his agent, the said James 
Anderson, to interpose the mediation of the British 
government to procure ^^ honorable terms" for the 
said Ranna, or even " safeti/ to his person and family" 
contains the bitterest invectives against him, and is 
expressive of the satisfaction which the said Hastings 
acknowledges himself to have enjoyed in the distresses 
of the said Ranna, the ally of the Company. 

That the measures therein recommended appear 
rather to have been designed to satisfy Mahdajee Siu- 
dia, and to justify the conduct of the British govern- 
ment in not having taken a more '.ctive and a more 
hostile part against the said Ranna, than an interces- 
sion on his behalf. 

That, though no consideration of good faith or ob- 
servance of treaties could induce the said Hastings to 
incur the hazard of any hostile exertion of the British 
force for the defence or the relief of the allies of the 
Company, yet in the said private letter he directed, 







that, in case his mediation should be accepted, it 
should be made a specific condition, that, if He said 
Rfrnna should take advantage of Sindia's absence to 
renew his hostilities, we ought, in that case, on requisi- 
tion, to invade the dominions of the Ranna. 

That no beneficial effects could have been procured 
to the said Banna by an offer of mediation delayed 
till Sindia no longer wanted " our assistance to crush 
so fallen an enemy," at the same time that no reason 
was given to Sindia to apprehend the danger of 
drawing upon himself the resentm-ut of the British 
government bj a disregard of their proposal and the 
destruction of their ally. 

That it was a gross and scandalous mockery in the 
said Hastings to defer an application to obtain honor- 
able terms for the Ranna, and safety for his person 
and family, till he had been deprived of his principal 
fort, in defence of which his uncle lost his life, and 
on the capture of which, his wife, to avoid the dis- 
honor consequent upon falling into the hands of her 
enemies, had destroyed herself by an explosion of gun- 

That, however, it does not appear that any offer of 
•mediation was ever actually made, or any influence 
exerted, either for the safety of the Ranna's person 
and family or in mitigation of the rigorous intentions 
supposed by Lieutenant Anderson* to have been en- 
tertained against him by Mahdajee Sindia after his 

That the said Hastings, in the instructions f given 
by him to Mr. David Anderson for his conduct in 
negotiating the treaty of peace with the Mahrattas, 
expressed his determination to desert tlie Ranna of 

• 29 February, 1784. t Dated, Bonares, 4th of November, 1781. 




Goliud in the following words. " You will of course 
be attentive to any engagements subsisting between 
us and other powers, in settling the terms of peace 
and alliance with the Mahrattas. I except from this 

the Ranna of Gohud Leave him to settle his 

own affairs with the Mahrattas." 

That the said Anderson appears very assiduously to 
have sought for grounds to justify the execution of 
this part of his instructions, to which, however, he 
was at all events obliged to conform. 

That, even after his application for that purpose to 
the Mahrattas, whose testimony was much to be sus- 
pected, because it was their interest to accuse and their 
determined object to destroy the said Ranna, no sotis- 
factory proof was obtained of his defection froi^ the 
engagements he had entered into with the Company. 
That, moreover, if all the charges which have been 
pretended against the Ranna, and have been alleged 
by the said Hastings in justification of his conduct, 
had been well founded and proved to be true, the 
subject-matter of those accusations and the proofs bv 
which they were to be supported were known to Col- 
onel Muir befo.-e the conclusion of the trea;;y he en- 
tered into with Mahdajee Sindia ; and therefore, what- 
ever suspicions may have been entertained or what- 
ever degree of criminality may have been proved 
against the said Ranna previous to the said treaty, 
from the time he was so provided for and ir -^.uded in 
the said treaty he was fully and justly entitled to the 
security stipulated for him by the Company, and had 
a right to demand and receive the protection of the 
British government. 

That these c-insiderations were urged by Mr. An- 
derson to the said Warren Hasting?, in his letter of 



)• 5 



the 24tli of June, 1781, and were enforced l)y this 
additional argument, — "that, in point of policy, I 
believe, it ought not to be our wish that the Mahrat- 
tas should ever recover the fortress of Gualior. It 
forms an important barrier to our own possessions. 
In the hands of the Ranna it can be of no prejudice 
to us ; and notwithstanding the present prospect of a 
permanent peace betwixt us and the Mahrattas, it 
seems highly expedient that there should always re- 
main some strong barrier to separate us, on this side 
of India, from that warlike and powerful nation." 

That the said Warren Hastings was highly culpable 
in abandoning the said Ranna to the fury of his ene- 
mies, thereby forfeiting the honor and injuring the 
credit of the British nation in India, notwithstanding 
the said Hastings was fully convinced, and had pro- 
fessed, " that the most sacred observance of treaties, 
justice, and good faith wore necessary to the existence 
of the national interests in that country," and though 
the said Hastings has complained of the insufficiency 
of the laws of this kingdom to enforce this doctrine 
" by the punishment of persons in the possession of 
power, who may be impelled by the provocation of 
ambition, avarice, or vengeance, stronger than the 
restr ctions of integrity and honor, to the violation of 
this juGt and wise maxim." 

Tliat the said Hastings, in thus departing from 
these his own principles, with a full and just sense 
of the guilt he would thereby incur, and in sacrific- 
ing the allies of this country " to the provocations of 
ambition, avarice, or vengeance," in violation of the 
national faith and justice, did commit a gross and 
wilful breach of his duty, and was thereby guilty 
of an high crime and misdemeanor. 






That the property of the lands of Bengal is, ac- 
cording to the laws and customs of that country, an 
inheritable property, and that it is, with few excep- 
tions, vested in certain natives, called zemindars, or 
landholders, under whom other natives, called talook- 
dar» and ryots, hold certain subordinate rights of 
property or occ-- "< v in the said lands. Tliat the 
said natives ai , and that their rights and 

'privileges are . / ^ipon the possession of regular 

grants, a long j fan-'ly succession, and fair 

purchase. Tliat ii appears lat Bengal has been un- 
der the dominion of tlie Mogul, and subject to a Ma- 
homedan government, for above two hundred years. 
That, while the Mogul government was in its vigor, 
the property of zemindars was held sacred, and that, 
either by voluntary grant from the said Mogul or 
by composition with liim, the native Hindoos were 
left in the free, quiet, and undisturbed possession 
of their lands, on the single condition of paying a 
fixed, certain, and unalterable revenue, or quit-rent, 
to the Mogiil government. That this revenue, or 
quit-rent, was called the aussil jumma, or original 
ground-rent, of the provinces, and was not increased 
from the time when it was first settled in 1573 to 
1740, when the regular and efifective Mogul govern- 
ment ended. That, from that time to 1765, invasions, 
usurpations, and various revolutions took place in the 
government of Bengal, in consequence of which the 
country was considerably reduced and impoverished, 
when the East India Comp my received from the 







? ^^. 







' » 

present Mogul emperor, Shah AUum. a grant of the 
dev'anny, or collection of the revenues. That about 
the year 1770 the provinces of Bengal and Bahar 
were visited with a dreadful famine and mortality, by 
which at least one third of the inhabitants perished. 
That Warren Hastings, Esquire, has declared, " that 
he had always heard the loss of inhabitants reckoned 
at a third, and in many places near one half of the 
whole, and that he knew not by what means such a 
loss could be recruited in four or five years, and be- 
lieved it impossible." That, nevertheless, the reve- 
nue was violently kept up to its former standard, — 
that is, in the two years immediately preceding the 
appointment of the said Warren Hastings to the gov- 
ernment of Fort William, — in consequence of which 
the remaining two thirds of the inhabitants were obliged 
to pay for the lands noio left without cultivation ; and 
that from the year 1770 to the year 1775 the country 
had languished, and the evil continutd enhancing every 
day. That the said Warren Hastings, in a letter 
to the Secret Committee of the Court of Directors, 
dated 1st September, 1772, declared, " that the lands 
had suffered unheard-of depopulation by the famine 
and mortality of 1769 ; that the collections, violently 
kept up to their former standard, had added to the dis- 
tress of the country, and threatened a general decay 
of the revenue, unless immediate remedies were ap- 
plied to prevent it." That the said Warren Hastings 
has declared, " that, by intrusting the collections to 
the hereditary zemindars, the people would be treated 
with more tenderness, the rents more improved, and 
cultivation more likely to be encouraged; that they 
have a perpetual interest in the country ; that their 
inheritance cannot be removed; that they are the 



proprietors ; tliat the lands are their estates, and their 
inlieritaiico ; that, from a hug contumance of the 
lands in their families, it is to he concluded they 
have riveted an authority in the district, acquired an 
ascendency ovc the mind;; of the ryots, and ingratiat- 
ed their njfedions; tliat, from continuing the lands un- 
der tl>e managoment of those who have a natural and 
perpetual interest in their prosperity, solid advan- 
tages might be expected to iccrue ; that the zemin- 
dar would he less liable to failu.-e or deficiencies than 
'^e farmer, from the p tual interest which the for- 
m. i- hath in the country,^ because his inheritance 
cannot be removed, and it would be improbable that 
he should risk the loss of it by eloping from his dis- 
trict, which is too frequently practised by a farmer 
when he is hard-pressed for the payment of his bal- 
ances, and as frequently predetermined when he re- 
ceives his farm." That, notwithstanding all the pre- 
ceding declarations made by the said Warren Hast- 
ings of the loss of one third of the inhabitants and 
general decline of the country, he d'', immediately 
after his appointment to the government, in the year 
1772, make an arbitrary settlement of the r' 'enues 
for five years at a higher rate than had ever been 
received before, and with a progressive and accumu- 
lating increase on each of the four lust years of the 
said settlement. 

That, notwithstanding the right of property and 
inheritance, repeatedly acknowledged by the said 
Warren Hastings to be in the zemindars and other 
native landholders, and notwithstanding he had de- 
clared " tliat the security of private property is the 
greatest encouragement to industry, on which the 
wealth of every state depends," the said Warren Hast- 

VOL. IX. 6 




i m^ 

tt*\ k 













iugs, nevertheless, "u direct violation of those scknowl- 
edf^cd rights and , uciplos, did universally let the 
lands of Bengal in farm for five years, — thereby 
dotroying all the riglits of private property of the 
zemindars, — thereby delivering the management of 
their estates to farmers, and transferring by a most 
arl>itrary and unjust act of power the whole landed 
property of Bengal from the owners to strangers. 
Tliat, to accomplish this iniquitous purpose, he, the 
said Warren Hastings, did put the lands of Bengal up 
to a pretended public aactioT'., and invited all persona 
to make proposals fjr farming the sume, thereby encour- 
aging strangers to bid against the proprietors, — in 
consequence of which, not only the said proprietors 
were ouste<l of the possession and management of 
their estates, but a great part of the lands fell into 
the hands of the banians, or principal black servants 
of British subjects connected with ai:<1 .tected by 
the government ; and that the said Waiven Hastings 
himself has since declared, that hi/ this way the land* 
too generally fell into the hands of desperate or knav- 
iiih adventurers.*" That, before the measure herein- 
before described was carried into execution, the said 
Warren Hastings did establish certain fundamental 
regulations in Council, to be observed in executing 
the samo.f That among these regulations it was 
specially and strictly ordered, that no farm should 
exceed the annual amount of one lac of rupees, and 
" that no peslicar, banian, or otlier servant, of what- 
ever denomination, of the collector, or relation or de- 
pendant of any such servant, should be allowed to farm 
lands, nor directly or indirectly to hold a concern in 

• Revenae Consnltation, 28th Jannary, 1775. 
t Revenae Board, Uth May, 1773. 

-"^■■-^-111 I lilpl 



any farm, nor to bo security for any farmor." That, 
in d'roct violatiou of tlieso his own regulations, and 
in broach of the public trust reposed in him, and suf- 
ficiently declared by the manifest duty of his station, 
if it liiiJ not boon expressed and enforced by any posi- 
tive institution, ho, the said Warren Hastings, did per- 
mit and suifer his own banian or principal black stew- 
ard, named Cantoo Baboo, to hold farms in different 
purgunnahs, or districts, or to bo security for farms, 
to the amount of thirteen lac of rupees ( 130,000i. 
or upwards) per annum ; and that, after enjoying the 
whole of those farms for two years, ho was permitted 
by the said Warren Hastings to relinquish two of 
them. That on the subject of the farms held b ' 
Cantoo Buboo the said Warren Hastings has made t' 
following declaration. " Many of his farms wore tak- 
en without my knowledge, and almost all against my 
advice. I had no right to use compulsion or author- 
ity ; nor could I with justice exclude him, because he 
was my servant, from a liberty allowed to all other 
persons in the country. The farms which he quitted 
lie quitted by my advice, because I thought tliat he 
might engage himself beyond his abilities, and be 
involved in disputes, which I did not chooso to have 
come 1 oforc me as judge c; them."* That the said 
declaration contains sundry false 8 ' ontradictory 
assertions: that, if almost all the su farms were 
taken against his advice, it cannot be true that many 
of them were taken without his knowledge; that, 
whether Cantoo Baboo had boon his servant or not, 
tin; said Warren Hastings was bound by his own reg- 
ulations to prevent his holding any farms to a greater 
amount than one lac of nipees per annum, and that 

• Address to the Court of Directors, 25lh March, 1775. 


/ #W 




II ' !! 

V i 



the said Cantoo Baboo, being Ihe servant of the Gov- 
ernor-General, was excluded by the said regulations 
from holding any farms whatever ; that, if (as the Di- 
rectors observe) it was thought dangerous to permit 
the banian of a collector to be concerned in farms, the 
same or stronger objections would always lie against 
the Governor's banian being so concerned ; that the 
said Warren Hastings had a right, and was bound by 
his duty, to prevent his servant from holding the sanae ; 
that, in advising the said Cantoo Baboo to relinquish 
some of the said farms, for which he was actually 
engaged, he has acknowledged an influence over his 
servant, and has used that influence for a purpose 
inconsistent with his duty to the India Company, 
namely, to deprive them of the security of the said 
Cantoo Baboo's engagement for farms which on trial 
he had found not beneficial, or not likely to continue 
beneficial, to himself; and that, if it was improper 
that he, the said Warren Hastings, should be the judge 
of any disputes in which his servant might be involved 
on account of his farms, that reason ought to have 
obliged him to prevent his servant from being engaged 
in any farms whatever, or to have advised his said 
servant to relinquish the remainder of his farms, as 
well as those which the said Warren Hastings affirms 
he quitted by his advice. That on the subject of the 
said charge the Court of Directors of the East India 
Company have come to the following resolution: 
" Resolved, That it appears that the conduct of the 
late President and Council of Fort William in Bengal, 
in suffering Cantoo Baboo, the present Governor-Gen- 
eral's banian, to hold farms in different purgunnahs to 
a large amount, or to be security for such farms, con- 
trary to the tenor and spirit of the 17th regulation of 





the Committee of Revenue at Fort WiUiam, of the 
14th May, 1772, and afterwards relinquishing that 
security without satisfaction made to the Company, 
was highly improper, and has been attended with 
considerable loss to the Company " ; and that in the 
whole of this transaction the said Warren Hastings 
has been guilty of gross collusion with his servant, 
and manifest breach of trust to his employers. 

That, whereas it was acknowledged by the said 
Warren Hastings, that the country, in the years 1770 
and 1771, had suffered great depopulation and decay, 
and that the collections of those years, having been 
violently kept up to their former standard, had added 
to the distress of the country, the settlement of the 
revenues made by him for five years, commencing the 
1st May, 1772, instead of offering any abatement or 
relief to the inhabitants who had survived the famine, 
held out to the East India Company a promise of great 
increase of revenue, to be exacted from the country 
by the means hereinbefore described. That this set- 
tlement was uQt realized, but fell considerably short, 
even in the first of the five years, when the demand 
was the lightest ; and that on the whole of the five 
years the real collections fell short of the settlement 
to the enormous amount of two millions and a half 
sterling, and upwards. That such a settlement, if it 
had been or could have been rigorously exacted from 
a country already so distressed, and from a population 
BO impaired, that, in the belief of the said Warren 
Hastings, it was impossible such loss could be recruited 
in four or five years, would have been in fact, what it 
appeared to be in form, an act of the most cruel and 
tyrannical oppression ; but that the real use made of 
that unjust demand upon the natives of Bengal was, 





to oblige them to compound privately with the per- 
sons who formed the settlement, and who threatened 
to enforce it. That the enormous balances and remis- 
sions on that settlement arose from a general collusion 
between the farmers and collectors, and from a gen- 
eral peculation and embezzlement of the revenues, by 
which the East India Company was grossly imposed 
on, in the first instance, by a promised increase of rev- 
enue, and defrauded, in the second, not only by the 
failure of that increase, but by the revenues falling 
short of what they were in the two years preceding 
the said settlemenL lo a great amount. That the said 
Warren Hastings, being then at the head of the gov- 
ernment of Bengal, was a party to all the said imposi- 
tion, fraud, peculation, and embezzlement, and is prin- 
cipally and specially answerable for the same ; and 
that, whereas sundry proofs of the said peculation 
and embezzlement were brought before the Court of 
Directors, the said Directors (in a letter dated the 4th 
of March, 1778, and signed by William Devaynes and 
Nathaniel Smith, Esquires, now Chairman and Depu- 
ty-Chairman of the said Court, and members of this 
House) did declare, that, " although it was rather their 
wish to prevent future evils than to enter into a se- 
v re retrospection of past abuses, yet, as in some of the 
cases then before them they conceived there had been 
flagrant corruption, and in others great oppressions 
committed on the native inhabitants, they thought it 
unjust to suffer the delinquents to pass wholly un- 
punished, and therefore they directed the Governor- 
General and Council forthwith to commence a prosecu- 
tion against the persons who composed the Committee 
of Circuit, and their representatives, and against all 
other proper parties " ; but that the prosecutions so 

[i • I. 



ordered by the Court of Directors in the year 1778 
have never been brought to trial ; and that the said 
Warren Hastings did, on the 23d of December, 1783, 
propose and carry it in Council, that orders should be 
given for withdrawinff the said prosecutions, — declar- 
ing, that he was clearly of opinion that there was no 
ground to maintain them, and that they would only 
he productive of expense to the Company and unmerited 
vexation to the parties. 

PART n. 
That the said "Warren Hastings has on sundry 
occasions declared his deliberate opinion generally 
against all innovations, and particularly in the col- 
lection and management of the revenues of Bengal: 
that " he was well aware of the expense and incon- 
venience which ever attends innovations of all kinds, on 
their first institution ;*— that innovations are ahvays 
attended with difficulties and inconveniences, and in- 
novations in the revenue with a suspension of the 
collections;! — that the continual variations in the 
mode of collecting the revenue, and the continual 
iisurpation on the rights of the people, have fixed 
in the minds of the ryots a rooted distnist of the or- 
dinances of government." t That the Court of Di- 
rectors have repeatedly declared their apprehensions 
♦' that a sudden transition from one mode to another, 
in the investigation and collection of their revenue, 
might have alarmed the inhabitants, lessened their 
confidence in the Company's proceedings, and been 
attended with other evils." § 

• 3d November, 1772. t 24th Oetoher, 1774. \ 22c; April, 1776. 
I 5th February, 1777 ; 4th July, 1777. 




L' ' 
I* *^* 

!'■ i' 

1 f; 

That the said Warren Hastings, immediately after 
liis appointment to the government of Fort William, 
in April, 1772, did abolish the office of Naib Dewan, 
or native collector of the revenues, then existing; 
that he did at the same time appoint a committee of 
the board to go on a circuit through the provinces, 
and to form a settlement of the revenues for five 
years ; that he did then appoint sundry of the Com- 
pany's servants to have the management of the col- 
lections, viz., one in each district, under the title of 
Collector; that he did then abolish the General Board 
of Revenue or Council at Moorshedabad, for the fol- 
lowing reasons: "That, while the controlling and 
executive part of the revenue and the correspondence 
with the collectors was carried on by a council at 
Moorshedabad, the members of the administration at 
Calcutta had no opportunity of acquiring that thor- 
ough and comprehensive knowledge which could only 
rosult irom practical experience; that the orders of the 
Court of Directors, which established a new system, 
wliich enjoined many new regulations and inquiries, 
could not properly be delegated to a subordinate 
council, and it became absolutely necessary that the 
business of the revenue should be conducted under the 
immediate observation and direction of the hoard."* — 
That in November, 1773, the said Warren Hastings 
abolished the office of Collector, and transferred the 
collection and management of the revenues to sev- 
eral councils of revenue, commonly called Provincial 
Councils. That on the 24th of October, 1774, the said 
Warren Hastings earnestly offered his advice (to the 
Governor-General and Council, then newly appointed 
by act of Parliament) for the continuation of the said 

* 3d November, 1772. 



syttem of Provincial Councils in all its paHs. That 
the said Warreu Hastings did, on the 22d of April, 
1775, transmit to the Directors a formal plan for the 
future settlement of the revenues, and did therem de- 
clare, that, " with respect to the mode of managing 
the collection of the revenue uud the administration 
of justice, none occurred to him so good as the sys- 
tem which was already established ot Provincial Coun- 
cils." That on the 18th of January, 1776, the said 
Warren Hasangs did transmit to the Court of Direc- 
tors a plan for the better administration of justice, 
that in this plan the establishment of the ssid Pro- 
vincial Councils was specially provided for and con- 
firmed, and that Warren Hastings did recommend it 
to the Directors to obtain the sanction of Parliament 
for a confirmation of the s.rd plan. That on the 30th 
of April, 1776, the said Warren Hastings did transmit 
to the Court of Directors the draft or scheme of an 
act of Parliament for the better administration of jus- 
tice in the provinces, in winch the said establisl.raent 
of Provincial Councils is again specially included, and 
special jurisdiction assigned to the said Councils. 
That the Court of Directors, in a letter dated 5th of 
February, 1777, did give the following instruction to 
the Governor-General and Council, a majority of 
whom, viz., Sir -T'^hu Clavering, Colonel Monson, and 
Mr. Francis, had disapproved of the plan of Provincial 
Councils : " If you are fully convinced that the estab- 
lishment of Provincial Councils har not answered nor 
is not capable of answering the purposes intended by 
such institutions, we hereby direct you to form a new 
plan for +'ie collection of the revenues, and to tians- 
mit the same to us /or our consideration." — 'Y\\aX tlio 
said Warren Hastings, in contradiction to his own 






r. ^■' 

I . 








k kf 



sentiments repeatedly declared, and to his own ad- 
vice repeatedly and deliberately given, and in defiance 
of the orders of the Directors, to whom he transmitted 
no previous communication whatever of his intention 
to abolish the said Provincial Councils, did, in the 
beginning of the year 1781, again change the whole 
system of the collections of the public revenue of Ben- 
gal, as also the administration of civil and criminal 
justice throughout the provinces. That the said War- 
ren Hastings, in a letter dated 5th of May, 17S1, 
advising the Court of Directors of the said changes, 
has falsely affirmed, " that the plan of superintending 
and collecting the public revenue of the provinces 
through the agency of Provincial Councils had been 
instituted for the temporary and declared purpose of 
introducing another more permanent mode hy an easy 
and gradual change"; that, on f'e contrary, the said 
Warren Hastings, from the year 1773 to the year 
1781, has constantly and uniformly insisted on the 
wisdom of that institution, and on the necessity of 
never departing from it; that he has in that time 
repeatedly advised that the said institution should be 
confirmed in perpetuity by an act of Parliament ; that 
the said total dissolution of the Provincial Councils 
was not introduced by any easy and gradual change, 
nor by any gradations wliatever, but was sudden and 
unprepared, and instantly accomplished by a single 
act of power ; and that the said Warren Hastings, in 
the place of the said Councils, has substituted a Com- 
mittee of Revenue, consisting of four covenanted ser- 
vants, on principles opposite to those which he had 
himself professed, and with exclusive powers, tending 
to deprive the members of the Supreme Council of a 
due knowledge of and inspection into the management 




of the territorial revenues, specially and unalienably 
vested by the legislatur-? in the Governor-General 
and Council, and to vest the same solely and entirely 
in the said Warren Hastings. That the reasons as- 
signed by the said Warren Hastings for constituting 
the said Committee of Revenue are inoompatil.le with 
those which he professed when he abolished the sub- 
ordinate Council of Revenue at Moorshedabtn' . that 
he has invested the said Comraitte-j in the fullest man- 
ner with all the powers and authority of the Governor- 
General and Council; that he has thereby contracted 
the whole power and office of the Provincial Councils 
into a small compass, and vested the same in four per- 
sons appointed by himself; that he has thereby tak- 
en the general transaction and cognizance of revenue 
business out of thi' Supreme Council; that the said 
Committee are empowered to conduct the cur-snt 
business of the revenue department without refer- 
ence to the Supreme Council, and only report to the 
board such extraordinary occurrences, claims, and pro- 
posals as may require the special orders of the board; 
that even the instruction to report to the l)oard in 
extraordinary cases is nugatory and fallacious, boing 
accompanied with limitations which malce it impos- 
sible for the said board to decide on any qvicstioiis 
whatsoever : since it is expressly provided by the 
said Warren Hastings, that, if the members of the Com- 
mittee differ in opinion, it is not expected that every dls- 
sextient opinion should he recorded; consequently the 
Supreme Council, on any reference to their board, 
can see nothing but the resolutions or reasons of 
the majority of the Committee, without the argu- 
ments on which the dissentient opinions might be 
founded : and since it is also expressly provided by 



ri ij 

the said Warren Hastings, that the determination qf 
the majority of the Committee should not ther^ore he 
stayed, unless it should be so agreed by the majority, — 
that is, that, notwithstanding the reference to the 
Supreme Council, the measure shall be executed 
without waiting for their decision. 

That the said Warren Hastings has delivered his 
opinion, with maiiy arguments to support the same, 
in favor of long leases of the lands, in preference to 
annual settlements : that he has particularly declared, 
"that the farmer who holds his farm for one year 
only, having no interest in the next, takes what he can 
witli the hand of rigor, which, even in the execution 
of legal claims, is often equivalent to violence ; he is 
under the necessity of being rigid, and even cruel, — 
for what is left in arrear after the expiration of his 
power is at best a doubtful debt, if ever recoverable ; 
he will bo tempted to exceed the bounds of right, and 
to augment his income by irregular exactions, and 
by racking the tenants, for which pretences will not 
be wanting, where the farms pass annually from one 
hand to another ; that the discouragements which the 
tenants feel from being transferred every year to new 
landlords are a great objection to such short leases ; 
that they contribute to injure the cultivation and 
dispeople the lands ; that, on the contrary, from long 
farms the farmer acquires a permanent interest in his 
lands ; he will, for his own sake, lay out money in 
assisting his tenants in improving lands already cul- 
tivated, and in clearing and cultivating waste lands." * 
That, nevertheless, the said Warren Hastings, having 
left it to the discretion of the Committee of Revenue, 
appointed by him in 1781, to fix the time for which 

• Uth May, 1772. 





the ensuing settlement should be made, and the said 
Committee having declared, that, with retpect to the 
period of the leases in general, it appeared to the Commit' 
tee that to limit them to one year would be the best pe- 
riod, he, the said Warren Hastings, approved of that 
limitation, in manifest contradiction to all his own 
arguments, professions, and declarations concerning 
the fatal consequences of annual leases of the lands ; 
that in bo doing the said Warren Hastings did not 
hold himself bound or restrained by the orders of the 
Court of Directors, but acted upon his own discre- 
tion ; and that he has, for partial and interested pur- 
poses, exercised that discretion in particular instances 
against his own general settlement for one year, by 
granting perpetual leases of farms and zemindaries to 
persons specially favored by him, and particularly by 
granting a perpetual lease of the zemindary of Bahar- 
bund to his servant Cautoo Baboo on very low terms. 
That in all the preceding transactions the said War- 
ren Hastings did act contrary to his duty as Governor 
of Fort William, contrary to the orders of his employ- 
ers, and contrary to his own declared sense of ex- 
pediency, consistency, and justice, and thereby did 
harass and afflict the inhabitants of the provinces 
w U perpetual changes in the system and execution 
of the government placed over them, and with contin- 
ued innovations and exactions, against the rights of 
the said inhabitants,— thereby destroying all securi- 
ty to private property, and all confidence in the good 
faith, principles, and justice of the British govern- 
ment. And that the said Warren Hastings, havmg 
substituted his own instruments to be the managers 
and collectors of the public revenue, in the manner 
hereinbefore mentioned, did act in manifest breacli 





I ,', 


and defiance of an act oftho 18th of his present Maj- 
esty, by which the ordering and management and gov- 
emmmt of all the territorial revenuet in the kingdomn 
of Bengal, Bahar, and Ori»»a were vested in the 
Govnrnor-General and Council, without any power 
of delegating the said trust and duty to any other 
persons ; and that, by such unlawful delegation of 
the powers of the Council to a subordinate board 
appointed by hinaself, he, the said Warren Hastings, 
did in effect unite and vest in his own person the 
ordering; government, and management of all the 
said territorial revenues ; and that for the said illegal 
act he, the said Warren Hastings, is solely answerable, 
the same having been proposed and resolved in Coun- 
cil when the Governor-General and Council consisted 
but of two persons present, — namely, the said War- 
ren Hastings, and the late Edward Wheler, Esquire, 
and when consequently the ijfovernor-General, by vir- 
tue of the casting voice, possessed the whole power 
of the government. That, in all the changes and in- 
novations hereinbefore described, the pretence used 
by the said Warren Hastings to recommend and jus- 
tify the same to the Court of Directors has been, that 
such changes and innovations would be attended with 
increase of revenue or diminution of expense to the 
East India Company ; that such pretence, if true, 
would not have been a justification of such acts ; but 
tbat such pretence is false and groundless : that dur- 
ing the administration of the said Warran Hast- 
ings the territorial revenues have declined ; that the 
charges of collecting the same have greatly increased ; 
and that the said Warren Hastings, by his neglect, 
mismanagement, and by a direct and intended waste 
of the Company's property, is chargeable with and 


V. # 



answerable for all the said decline of revenue, and all 
the said increase of expense. 


I. That the province of Oude and its dependencies 
were, before their connection with and subordination to 
the Company, in a flourishing condition with regard 
to culture, commerce, and population, and their rul- 
ers and principal nobility maintained themselves in a 
state of affluence and splendor ; but very shortly after 
the period aforesaid, the prosperity both of the country 
and its chiefs began sensibly and rapidly to decline, in- 
somuch that the revenue of the said province, which, on 
the lowest estimation, hai Seen found, in the commence- 
ment of the British influerce, at upwards of three mil- 
lions sterling annually, (and that ample revenue raised 
without detriment to the country,) did not in the year 
1779 exceed the sum of l,500,000i., and in the subse- 
quent years did fall much short of that sum, although 
the rents were generally advanced, and the country 
grievous-ly oppressed in order to raise it. 

II. That in the aforesaid year, 1779, the demands 
of the East India Company on the Nabob of Oude are 
stated by Mr. Purling, their Resident at the court of 
Oude, to amount to the sum of 1,360,000?. sterling 
and upwards, leaving (upon the supposition that the 
whole revenue should amount to the sum of 1,500, 
GOOZ. sterling, to which it did not amount) no more 
than 140,000Z. sterling for the support of the dignity 
of the household and family of the Nabob, and for the 
maintenance of his government, as well as for the pay- 
ment of the public debts due within the province. 





m. Tliai by the treaty of Fyzabad a regular brigade 
of the Company's troops, to be stationed in the domin- 
ions of the Nabob of Oudo, was kept up at the expense 
of the said Nabob ; in a^ :ition to which a temporary 
brigade of the same troops was added to his estab- 
lishment, together with several detached corps in the 
Company's serrico, and a great part of his own native 
troops were put under the commard of British officers. 


IV. Tliat the expense of the Company's temporary 
brigade increased in the same year (the year of 1779) 
upwards of 80,0002. sterling above the estimate, and 
the expense of the country troops under British offi- 
cers in the same period increased upwards of 40,000?. 
sterling ; and in addition to the aforesaid ruinous 
expenses, a large civil establishment was gradually, 
secretly, and without any authority from the Court 
of Directors, or record in the books of the Council- 
General concerning the same, formed for the Resident, 
and another under Mr. Wombwell, an agent for the 
Company ; as also several pensions and allowances, 
in the same secret and clandestine manner, were 
charged on the revenues of the said Nabob for the 
benefit of British subjects, besides large occasional 
gifts to persons in the Company's service. 

V. That in the month of November, 1779, the said 
Nabob did represent to Mi. Purling, the Company's 
Resident aforesaid, the distressed state of liis revenues 
in the following terms. " During three years past, 
the expense occasioned by the troops in brigade, and 
others commanded by European officers, has much 
distressed the support of my household, insomuch tliat 
the allowances made to the seraglio and children of 

i\ i 



the deceased Nabob have boon reduced to one fourth 
of what it had beon, upon which thoy have subeisted 
in a very distressed manner for two years past. The 
attendants, writers, and servants, Ac, of my court, 
have •^ceivod no pay for two years past ; and there 
is at present no part of the country tliat can be allot- 
ted to the payment of ray father's private creditors, 
whose applications are daily pressing upon me. All 
these difficulties I have for these three years past 
struggled through, and found this consolation therein, 
that it was complying with the pleasure of the Honor- 
able Company, and in the hope that the Supreme Coun- 
cil would make inquiry from impartial persons into 
my distressed situation ; but I am now forced to a 
representation. From the great increase of expense, 
the revenues were necessarily farmed out at a high 
rate; and deficiencies followed yearly. The cou Ory 
and cultivation is abandoned ; and this year in partic- 
ular, from the excessive drought, deductions of many 
lacs" (stated by the ilesidcnt, in his letter to the 
board of tlie 13th of the month following, to amount 
to twenty-five lac, or 250,000Z. sterling) " have been 
allowed the farmers, who were still left unsatisfied. 
I have received but just sufiicient to support my ab- 
solute necessities, the revenues being deficient to the 
amount of fifteen lac [ 150,000^ sterling], and for this 
reason many of the old chieftains with their troops, 
and the useful attcudsnts of the court, were forced to 
leave it, and there is now only a few foot and horse 
f(jr the collection of my revenues; and should the 
zemindars be refractory, there is not left a sufficient 
number to reduce them to obedience." And the said 
Nabob did therefore pray that the assignments for the 
new brigade, the onrps of ho> o, and the other de 

i, * f'l 

*•! *M 





• ! 'l' 

teched bodies of the Company's troops might not 
be required from him: alleging, "that the former 
was not only quite useless to his government, but, 
moreover, the cause of much loss, both in the revenues 
and customs ; and that the detached bodies of troops 
under their European officers brought nothing but con- 
fusion into the affairs of his government, and were en- 
tirely their own masters." 

VI. That it appears that the said Nabob was not 
bound by any treaty to the maintenance, without his 
consent, even of the old brigade, — the Court of Direc- 
tors having, in their letter of the 15th December, 
1775, approved of keeping the same in his service, 
^'^ provided it was done with the free consent of the Su- 
hah, and by iw means without it." And the new bri- 
gade and temporary corps were raised on the express 
condition, that the expense thereof should be charged 
on the Nabob only "/or so long a time as he should 
require the corps for his service." And the Court of 
Directors express to the Governor-General and Coun- 
cil their sense of the said agreement in the following 
terms : " But if you intend to exert your influence 
first to induce the Vizier to acquiesce in your proposal, 
and afterwards to compel him to keep the troops in his 
pay during your pleasure, your intents are unjust; and 
a correspondent conduct would reflect great dishonor on 
the Company.'' 

VII. That, in answer to the decent and humble 
reproseiitfxti'^ aforesaid of the Nabob of Oude, the 
allegations oi which, so far as they relate to the dis- 
tresi^ed state of the Nabob's finances, and his total 
inability to discharge the demands made on him, 





were confirmed by the testimony of the English Resi- 
dent at Oude, and which the said Hastings did not 
deny in the whole or in any part thereof, he, the said 
"Warren Hastings, did, on pretence of certain political 
dangers, declare the relief desired to be " witliout 
hesitation totally inadmissible," and did falsely and 
maliciously insinuate, "that the tone in which the 
demands of the Nabob were asserted, and the season 
in which they were made, did give cause for the most 
alarming guspicions." And the said Warren Hast- 
ings did, in a letter to the Nabob aforesaid, written in 
haughty and insolent language, and without taking 
any notice of the distresses of the said Nabob, alleged 
and verified as before recited, "require and insist 
upon your [the Nabob's] granting tuneatos [assign- 
ments] for the full amount of their [the Company's] 
demands upon you for the current year, and on your 
reserving funds sufficient to answer them, even should 
the deficiencies of your revenues compel you to leave your 
own troops unprovided for, or to disband a part of them 
to enable you to effect it." 

Vni. That, in a letter written at the same time to 
the Resident, Purling, and intended for his directions 
in enforcing on tlie Nabob the unjust demands afore- 
said, the said Warren Hastings hath asserted, in direct 
contradiction to the treaties subsisting between the 
said Nabob and the Company, " that he [the Nabob] 
stands engaged to our government to maintain the 
English armies which at his own request have been 
formed for the protection of his dominions, and that 
it is our part, and not his, to Judge and determine in 
what manner and at what time these shall be reduced 
and withdrawn." And in a Minute of Consultation, 






when the aforesaid measure was proposPu by the said 
Hastings to the Supreme Council, he did affirm and 
maintain that the troops aforesaid " had now no t^a- 
rate or distinct existence from ours, and may be prop- 
erly said to consist of our whole military establish- 
ment, with the exception only of our European infan- 
try ; and that they could not be withdrawn without 
imposing on the Company the additional burden of 
them, or disbanding nine battalions of disciplined se- 
poys and three regiments of horse." 

IX. That in the Minute of Consultation aforesaid, 
he, the said "Warren Hastings, hath further, in justifi- 
cation of the violent and arbitrary proceedings afore- 
said, asserted, " that the arrangement of measures 
between the British government and their allies, the 
native powers of India, must, in case of disagreement 
about the necessity thereof, be decided by the stron- 
gest "; and hath thereby advanced a dangerous and 
most indecently expressed position, subversive of the 
rights of allies, and tending to breed war and con- 
fusion, instead of cordiality and cooperation amongst 
them, and to destroy all confidence of the princes of 
India in the faith and justice of the English nation. 
And the said Hastings, having further, in the minute 
aforesaid, presumed to threaten to "bring to pun- 
ishment, if my influence " ( his, the said Hastings's, 
influence) " can produce that effect, those incendiaries 
who have endeavored to make themselves the instru- 
ments of division between us," hath, as far as in him 
lay, obstructed the performance of one of the most 
essential duties of a prince engaged in an unequal al- 
liance with a presiding state, — that of representing 
the grievances of his subjects to that more powerful 

I* '' 


state by whose acts they suffer: leaving thereby the 
governing power v.. total ignorance of the effects of 
its own measures, and to the oppressed people no 
other choice than the alternative of an unqualified 
submission, or a resistance productive of consequen- 
ces more fatal. 

X. That, all relief being denied to the Nabob, in 
the manner and on the grounds aforesaid, the de- 
mands of the Company on the said Nabob in the year 
following, that is to say, in the year 1780, did amount 
to the euormous sum of 1,400,000?. sterling, and the 
distress of the province did rapidly increase. 

XI. That the Nabob, on the 24th of February of 
the same year, did again write to the Governor-Gen- 
eral, the said Warren Hastings, a letter, in which he 
expressed his constant friendship to the Company, 
and his submission and obedience to their orders, and 
asserting that he had not troubled them with any 
of his difficulties, trusting they would learn them 
from other quarters, and that he should be relieved 
by their friendship. "But," he says, " when the 
haife had penetrated to the hone, and I was surrounded 
with such heavy distresses that I could no longer live 
in expectations, I then wrote an account of my diffi- 
culties. The answer I have received to it is such that 
it has given me inexpressible grief and affliction. I 
never had the least idea or expectation from you and 
the Council that you would have given your orders 
in to afflicting a manner, in which you never before 
wrote, and I could 'ver have imagined. I have deliv- 
ered up all my private papers to him [the Resident] 
that, after examining my receipts and expenses, he 






may take whateyer remains. That, as I know it to 
be my duty to satisfy you [the Company and Coun- 
cil], I bare not failed to obey in any instance; but 
requested of him that it might be done so as not to 
distress me in my necessary expenses. There being 
no other funds but those for the expenses of my mut- 
teddies [clerks and accountants] , household expenses, 
and servants, &c., he demanded these in such a man- 
ner, tl i, being remediless, I was obliged to comply 
with what he required. He has accordingly stopped 
the pensions of my old servants for thirty years, whether 
sepoys [^soldiers'], mutseddies [secretaries and account- 
ants'], or household servants, and the expenses of my 
family and kitchen, together with the jaghires of my 
grandmother, mother, and aunts, and of my brothers and 
dependants, which were for their support.'* 

XII. That, in answer to the letter aforesaid, the 
Resident received from the said Warren Hastings and 
Council an order to persevere in the demand to its 
fullest extent, — that is to say, to the amount of 
1,400,000Z. sterling. 





XIII. That on the 15th of May the Nabob replied, 
complaining in an humble and suppliant manner of 
his distressed situation : that he had at first opposed 
the assigning to the use of the Company the states 
of his mother, of his grandmother, of one of his un- 
cles, and of the sons of another, but that, in obedi- 
ence to the injunctions of the gentlemen of the Coun- 
cil, it had been done, to the amount, on the whole, 
of 80,000Z. sterling a year, or thereabouts ; that what- 
ever effects were in the country, with even his table, 
his animals, and the salaries of his servants, were 

I ' 



granted in assignments ; tliat, besides these, if they 
were resolved again to compel him to give up the es- 
tates of his parents and relations, which were granted 
th-iiLi for their maintenance, they were at the Compa- 
ny'ji disposal ; saying, " If the Council have directed 
you to attach them, do it : in the country no further 
sources remain. I have no means ; for I have not a 
subsistence. — How long shall I dwell upon my mis- 
fortunes ? " 

XIV. That the truth of the said remonstrances 
was not d'<puted, nor the tone in which they were 
written complained of, the same being submissive, 
and even abject, though the cause (his distresses) 
was by the said Hastings, in o. great degree, and in 
terms the most offensive, attributed to the Nabob 
himself; but no relief was given, and the same un- 
warrantable establishments, maintained at the same 
ruinous expense, were kept up. 

XV. That the said Warren Hastings, having con- 
sidered as incendiaries those who advised the remon- 
strances aforesaid, and, to prevent the same in fu- 
ture, having denounced vengeance on those concerned 
therein, did, for the purpose of keeping in his own 
power all representations of the state of the court and 
country aforesaid, an*' ''ubject both the one and 
the other to his owi. vary will, and to draw to 
himself and to his crt. >s the mana^ lent of the 
Nabob's revenues, in defiance of the orders of the 
Court of Directors, a second time recall Mr. Bristow, 
the Company's Resident, from the court of Oude, — 
having once before recalled him, as the said Directors 
express themselves, " without the shadow of a charge 





■ ; 

II '■''■ 



being exhibited against him," and having, on the oc- 
casion and time now stated, produced no specific 
charge against the said Resident; and he, the said 
Hastings, did appoint Nathaniel Middleton, Esquire, 
to succeed him, — it being his declared principle, that 
he must have a person of hit own confidence in that 

XVI. That the said Warren Hastings, after he 
had refused all relief to the distresses of the Nabob in 
the manner aforesaid, and had described those who 
advised the representation of the grievances of Oude 
as incendiariis, did himself, in a minute of the 21st 
May, 1781, describe that province " as fallen into a 
state of great disorder and confusion, and its re> 
sources in an extraordinary degree diminished," — 
and did state, that his presence in the said province 
nas n^ nested by the Nabob, and that, unless some 
effectu.ii measures were taken for his relief, he [the 
Nabob] must be under the necessity of leaving his 
country, and coming down to Calcutta, to represent 
the situation of his government. And Mr. Wheler 
did declare that the Governor-General's representa- 
tion of the state of that province " was but too well 
founded, and was convinced that it would require his 
utmost abilities and powers, applied and exercised on 
the spot, to restore it to its former good order and 

XVII. That the said Warren Hastings, in conse- 
quence of the minute aforesaid, did grant to himself, 
and did procure the consent of his only colleague, 
Edward Wheler, Esquire, to a commission or dele- 
gation, with powers " to assist the Nabob Vizier in 





forming such regulations as may be necessary for the 
peace and good order of his government, the improve- 
ment of his revenue, and the adjustment of the mu- 
tual concerns subsisting between him and the Compa- 
ny." And in the said commission or delegation he, 
the said Warren Hastings, did cause to be inserted 
certain powers and provisions of a new and danger- 
ous nature : that is to say, reciting the business before 
mentioned, he did convey to himself " such author- 
ity to enforce the same as the Governor- General and 
Council might or could exercise on occasions in which 
they could be warranted to exercise the same, and to 
form and conclude such several engagements or trea- 
ties with the Nabob Vizier, the government of Berar, 
and with any chiefs or powers of Hindostan, as he 
should judge expedient and necessary." Towards 
the conclusion of the act or instrument aforesaid are 
the words following, viz. : " It is hereby declared, 
that all such acts, and all such engagements or trea- 
ties aforesaid, shall be bmding on the Governor-Gen- 
eral and Council in the same manner, and as effectu- 
ally, as if they had been done and passed by the specific 
and immediate concurrence and actual junction of the 
Governor- General and Council, in council assembled." 
And the said powers were, by the said Warren Hast- 
ings, given by himself and the said Wheler, under 
the seal of the Company, on the 3d July, 1781. 

XVni. That the said commission, delegating to 
him, the said Warren Hastings, the whole functions 
of the Council, is destructive to the constitution 
thereof, and is contrary to the Company's standing 
orders, and is illegal. 





i. ' I i'' 

■I • 

1: 'J* ; 

XIX. That, in virtue of those powers, and the il- 
legal delegation aforesaid, tlie said Warren Hastings, 
after lie Iiad finished hia business at Benares, did pro- 
cure a meeting with the Nabob of Oude at a place 
called Cimnar, upon the confines of the country of 
Benares, and did there enter into a treaty, or pre- 
tended treaty, with the said Nabob; one part of 
which the said Warren Hastings did pretend was 
drawn up from a series of requisitions presented to 
hira by the Nabob, but which requisitions, or any 
copy thereof, or of any other material document rel- 
ative thereto, he did not at the time transmit to the 
Presidency, — the said Warren Hastings informing 
Mr. Wheler, that the Resident, Middleton, had taken 
the authentic papers relative to this transaction with 
him to Lucknow: and it does not appear that tlie 
said Warren Hastings did ever reclaim the said pa- 
pers, in order to record them at the Presidency, to 
be transmitted to the Court of Directors, as it was 
his duty to do. 

XX. That the purport of certain articles of the 
said treaty, on the part of the Company, was, that, in 
consideration of tlie Nabob's inabiUtt/ (which inabU- 
ity the preamble of the treaty asserts to have been 
" repeatedly and urgently represented ") to support 
the expenses of the temporary brigade, and of three 
regiments of cavalry, and also of the British officers 
with their battalions, and of other gentlemen who 
were then paid by him, the several co^ps aforesaid, 
and the other gentlemen, (with the exception of the 
Resident's office then on the NaboVs list, and a regi- 
ment of sepoys for the Resident's guard,) should, after 
a term of two and a half months, be no longer at his, 



tlie Nabob's, charge : " the true meaning of this being, 
that no more troops than one brigade, and the pay and 
allowances of a regiment of sepys," (as aforc>*aid, to 
the Resident,) amounting in the whole to 342,000Z. a 
year, should be paid by the Nabob ; and that no officers, 
troops, or others, should be put upon the Nabob's estab- 
lishment, exclusive of those in the said treaty stipu- 

XXI, That the said Warren ^^istings did defend 
and justify the said articbs, in which the troops afore- 
said were to be removed from the Nabob's esiablish- 
ment, by declaring as follows. " That the actual dis- 
bursements to those troops had fallen upon our own 
funds, and that we support a body of troops, estab- 
lished solely for the defence of the Nabob's possessions, 
at our own expense. It is true, we charge the Nabob 
with this expense ; but the large balance already due 
from him shows too justly the little prospect there was 
of disengaging ourselves from a burden which was 
daily adding to our distresses and must soon become 
insupportable, although it were granted that the Na- 
bob's debt, then suifered to accumulate, miyht at some 
future period be liquidated, and that this measure 
would substantially effect an instant relief to the pe- 
cuniary distresses of the Company." 

XXII. That Nathaniel Middletou, the Resident, 
did also declare that he would at all times testify, 
"that, upon the plan of the foregoing years, the 
receipts from the Nabob were only a deception, and 
not an advantage, but an injury to the Company," and 
" that a remission to the Nabob of this insufferable 
burden was a profit to the Company." And the said 





Ha-tings did assert that the force of the Company was 
not lessened by withdrawing the temporary troops; 
although, when it suited the purpose of the said Hast- 
ings, in denying just relief to the distresses of the said 
Nabob of Oude, he had not scrupled to assort the 
direct contrary of the positions by him maintained in 
justification of the treaty of Chunar, — having in his 
minute aforesaid, of the 15th of December, 1779, 
asserted, " that these troops " (the troops maintained 
by the Nabol of Oude) " had no $eparate or distinct 
existence, and may be properly said to consist of our 
whole military establishment, with the exception only 
of our European infantry, and that they could not be 
withdrawn, without imposing on the Company the addi- 
tional burden of their expense, or disbanding nine bat* 
talious of disciplined sepoys and three regiments of 




XXIII. That he, the said Warren Hastings, in 
justification of his agreement to withdraw the troops 
aforesaid from the territories and pay of the Nabv>b 
of Oude, did further declare, " that he had been too 
much accustomed to the tales of hostile preparation 
and Impending invasions, against all the evidence of 
political probability, to regard them as any other than 
phantoms raised for the purpose of perpetuating or 
multiplying commands," and he did trust " all ideas 
of danger from the neighboring powers were alto- 
gether visionary ; and that, even if tb^v had been bet- 
ter founded, this mode of anticipating possible evils 
would be more mischievous than anything they had 
reason to apprehend," and that the internal state of 
the Nabob's dominions did not require the continuance 
of the said troops ; and that the Nabob, " whose concern 




jf tww, and not otin;' did affirm the samo, — notwith- 
standing ho, tho said Hastings, had before, in anssrer 
to the humble supplications of the Nabob, assorted, 
that '• it wot our paH, and not Ma, to judge and deter- 
mine in what manner and at what time they should 
be reduced or withdrawn." 

XXIV. Tl\at the said Warren Hastings, in support 
of his measure of withdrawing the said brigade and 
o.ho? troops, did also represent, that " the remote 
stations of those troops, placmg tho commanding offi- 
cers beyond tho notice anu control of the board, af- 
forded too much opportunity and temptation for un- 
warrantable emoluments, and excited tho contagion 
of peculation and rapacity throughovi the whole army, 
and, as an instance thereof, that a court-martial, com- 
posed of officers of rank and respectable characters, 
unanimously and honorably, 'most honorably,' ac- 
quitted an officer upon an acknowledged fact which 
in times of stricter discipline would have been deemed 
a crime deserving the severest punishment." 

XXV. Tliat the said Warren Hastings, having in 
the letter aforesaid contradicted all the grounds and 
reasons by him assigned for keeping up the aforesaid 
establishment, and having declared his own conviction 
that the whole was a fallacy and imposition, and a 
detriment to the Company instead of a benefit, cir- 
cumstances (if they are .le) which he might and 
ought to have well known, was guilty of an high crime 
and misdemeanor in carrying on the imposture and 
delusion aforesaid, and in continuing an insupporta- 
ble burden and grievance upon the Nabob for several 
years, without attending to his repeated supplications 

'. •ill' 







to be roliovcd thorofrom, to tho uttor ruin of liis coun- 
tiy, and to tlio destruction of tho discipline of the 
British troops, by diffusing among them a general 
spirit of peculation ; and tlie said Hastings hotli com- 
mitted a grievous offence in upholding the same per- 
nicious system, until, by his own confession and dec- 
laration, in his minute of the 2l8t of May, 1781, 
" the evils had grotcn to so great an height, tliat ex- 
ertions will be required more powerful than can be 
made through tho delegated authority of the ser- 
vants of the Company now m the province, and that 
he was far from sanguine in his expectations that 
even hU own mdeavort would be attended with much 

XXVI. Th*" • time of making the said treaty, 
and at the tin. der color of the distress of 

the Nabob of Oui failure of all other means 

for his relief, he, the _ Hastings, broke the Com- 
pany's faith with the parents of the Nabob, and first 
oncouraged and afterwards compelled him to despoil 
them of tiieir landed estates, money, jewels, and house- 
hold goods, and wliile the said Nabob continued 
heavily in debt to the Company, he, the said Warren 
Hastings, did, ^'without hesitation," accept of and 
receive from tho Nabob of Oude and his ministers 
(who are notoriously known to be not only under his 
influence, but under his absolute command) a bribe, 
or unlawful gift or present, of one hundred thousand 
pounds sterling, and upwards. Tliat, even if the said 
pretended gift could be supposed to be voluntary, it 
was contrary to the express provision of the Regulating 
Act of the 13th year of liis Majesty's reign, prohibiting 
the receipt of all presents upon any pretence whatso- 





ever, and contrary to his own sense of the true tout 
and meaning of the said act, declared ufxjn a similar, 
but not so strong a case, — that is, where the service 
done, and the present offered in return for it, had 
taken place liefore the promulgation of the above laws 
in India : on that occasion he declared, " that the ex- 
clusion by an act of Parliament admitted of no abate- 
ment or evasion, wherever its authority extended." 

XXVII. That the said Warren Hastings, confiding 
in an interest which he s^ppo^oll himself to have 
formed in the East India House, did endeavor to pre- 
vail on the Court of Directors to violate the said act, 
and to suffer him to appropriate the money so ille- 
gally accepted by him to his own profit, as a reward 
for his services. 

XXVIII. That the said Warren Hastings has since 
declared to the Court of Pin^ctors, that, when fortune 
threw a sum in his way (meaning the sum of money 
above mentioned) of a magnitude which could not he 
concealed, he chose to apprise his employers of it : • 
thereby confessing, that, but for the magnitude of the 
same rendering it difficult to be concealed, he never 
would have discovered it to them. And the said un- 
lawful present being received at the time when, for 
reasons directly contradictory of all his former record- 
ed declarations, he did agree to remove the aforesaid 
troops from the Nabob's dominions, and to recall the 
pensioners aforesaid, it must be presumed that he 
did not agree to give the relief (which he had before 
Bo obstinately refused) upon the grounds and motives 
of justice, policy, or humanity, Imt in consideration 

• See his letter of the 11 th July, 1 :85, at the end of the Charge* 


■Ui • 





W '11 


: '^' i^ 

\ I I*! 




of the sum of money aforesaid, which, in a time of 
such extreme distress in the Nabob's affairs, could not 
be rationally given, except for those and other conces- 
sions stipulated for in the said treaty, but which had 
on former occasions been refused. 

XXIX. That, notwithstanding his, the said War- 
ren Hastings's, receipt of the present of one hundred 
thousand pounds, as aforesaid, he did violate every 
one of the stipulations in the said treaty contained, and 
particularly he did continue in the country, and in 
the service of the Nabob of Oude, those troops which 
he had so recently stipulated to withdraw from his 
country and to take from his establishment : for, up- 
on the 24th of December following, he did order the 
temporary brigade, making ten battalions of five hun- 
dred men each, to be again put on the Vizier's list, 

although he had recently informed the Court of Di- 
rectors, through Edward Wheler, Esquire, that any 
benefit to be derived from the Nabob's paying that 
brigade was a fallacy and a deception, and that the 
same was a charge upon the Company, and not an 
alleviation of its distresses, as well as an insupportable 
burden to the Nabob : thus having, within a short 
space of time, twice contradicted himself, both in dec- 
laration and in conduct. 

XXX. That this measure, in direct violation of a 
treaty of not three months' duration, was so injudi- 
cious, that, in the opinion of the Assistant Resident, 
Johnson, " nothing less than blows could effect it " : 
he, the said Resident, further adding, " that the Nabob 
was not even able to pay off the arrears still due to it 
[the new brigade] ; and that the troops being all in 

n> ; 



arrears, and no possibility of present payment, so large 
a body asBemblcd here [viz., at Lucknow] without any 
means to clieck and control them, nothing but disor- 
der could follow. As one proof that the Nabob is as 
badly off for funds as we are, I may inform you that 
his cavalry rose this day upon him, and went all armed 
to the palace, to demand from thirteen to eighteen 
months' arrears, and were with great difficulty per- 
suaded to retire, which wa^ probably more effected 
by a body of troops getting under arms to go against 
them than any other consideration." But the letter of 
Warren Hastings, Esquire, of the 24th of December, 
giving the above orders for the infraction of the treaty, 
and to which the letter from whence the foregoing 
extracts are taken is an answer, doth not appear, any 
otherwise than as the same is recited in the said an- 


XXXI. That, notwithstanding the disorders and 
deficiencies in the revenue aforesaid had continued 
and increased, and that three very large balances 
had accumulated, the said Warren Hastings did 
cause the Treasury accounts at Calcutta to be ex- 
amined and scrutinized, and an account of another 
arrear, composed of various articles, pretended to 
have accumulated during seven years previous to the 
year 1779, (the articles composing which, if they had 
been just, ought to have been charged at the times 
they severally became due,) was sent to the Resident, 
and payment thereof demanded, to the amount of 
260,000Z. sterling ; which unexpected demand, in so 
distressed a situation, did not a little embarrass the 
Nabob. But whilst he and his ministers were exam- 
ining into the said unexpected demand, another, and 




fifth balance, made up of similar forgotten articles, 
•vras demanded, to the amount of 140,0002. sterling 
more. Which said two last demands did so terrify 
and confound the Nabob and his ministers, that they 
declared that the Iloaident " miglit at once take the 
country, since justice was out of tlie question." 

i«:>; I'j 




XXXII. That the said E is 1 ings, in order to add 
to the confusion, perplexity <; 'd distress of the Na- 
bob's affairs, did send to his «.. irt (in wliich he had 
already a Resident and Assistant Resident) two se- 
cret agents. Major Palmer and Major Davy, and did 
instruct Major Palmer to make a variety of new 
claimp^ one of a loan to the Company of 600,0002. 
sterling, although he well knew the Nabob was him- 
self heavily in arrear to the Company, and was utter- 
ly unable to discharge the same, as well as in arrear 
to his own troops, and to many individuals, and 
that he borrowed (when he could at all borrow) at 
an interest of near thirty per cent. To this demand 
was added a new bribe, or unlawful present, to him- 
self, to the amount of 100,0002. sterling, which he 
did not refuse as unlawful and of evil example, but 
as indelicate in the Nabob's present situation, — and 
did, as if the same was his own property, presume 
to dispose of it, and to desire the transfer of it, as of 
his own bounty, to the Company, his masters. To 
this second demand he, the said Hastings, added a 
third demand of 120,0002. sterling, for four addi- 
tional regiments on the Nabob's list, after he had sol- 
emnly engaged to take off the ten with which it had 
been burdened : the whole of the claims through his 
private agent aforesaid makuig the sum of 820,0002. 




XXXin. That the demands, claims, &c., made by 
the said Warren Hastings upon the government of 
Oude in that year amounted to tlie enormous sum 
of 2,530,000Z. sterling ; which joined to the arrears 
to troops, and some internal failures, amounting to 
255,000Z. sterling more, the whole charge arose to 
2,785,000?. sterling, which was considerably more 
than double the net produce of the Nabob's revenue, 
— the same only amounting to 1,450,000Z. " nomi- 
nal revenue, never complete) *ized." 



XXXIV. That, towards pn ...ig for these ex- 
travagant demands, he, the said Warren Hastings, 
did direct and authorize another breach of the pub- 
lic faith given in the treaty of Chunar. For whereas, 
by the second article of the treaty aforesaid, it was 
left to the Nabob's discretion whether or not he should 
resume the landed estates, called jaghires, within his 
dominions, and notwithstanding the said Hastings, in 
defence of the said article, did declare that the Na- 
bob should be left to the exercise of his own author- 
ity and pleasure respecting them, yet he, the said 
Hastings, did authorize a violent compulsion to be 
used towards the said Nabob for accomplishing an 
universal confiscation of that species of landed prop- 
erty ; and in so doing he did also compel the Nabob 
to break his faith with all the landholders of that 
description, not only in violating the assurance of his 
own original grants, but his assuranc 'ecently given, 
when, being pressed by the Company, he, the Nabob, 
had made a temporary seizure of the profits of the 
lands aforesaid, in the manner of a compulsory loan, 
for the repayment of which he gave his bonds and ob- 
ligations ; and although he had at the same time sol- 



emnly pledged his faitli that he never would again 
resort to the like oppressive measure, yet he, the said 
"Warren Hastings, did cause him to be compelled to 
confiscate the estates of at least sixty-seven of the 
principal nersons of his country, comprehending there- 
in his own nearest relations and the ancient friends 
and deop' lants of his family : the annual value of the 
said ^oUites thus confiscated amounting to 435,0002. 
sterling, or thereabouts, upon an old valuation, but 
8ta1 ^ by tlie Resident, Middleton, as being found to 
yielu considerably more. 

XXXV. That the violont and unjust measure 
aforesaid, subversive of property, utteiiy destructive 
of several ancient and considerable families, and most 
dishonorable to the British government, did produce 
an universal discontent and the greatest confusion 
throughout the whole country, — the said confiscated 
lands being on this occasion put to rack-rents, and the 
people grievously oppressed : and to prevent a possi- 
bility of redress, at least for a considerable time, the 
said confiscated estates were mortgaged (it appearing 
otherwise impracticable to make an approach towards 
satisfying the exorbitant demands of the said Hast- 
ings) for a great sum to certain usurious bankers or 
money-dealers at Benares. 

XXXVI. That, besides these enormous demands, 
which were in part made for the support of several 
corps of troops under British officers which by the 
treaty of Chunar ought to have been removed, very 
large extra charges not belonging to the military list 
of the said Nabob, and several civil charges and pen- 
sions, were continued, and others newly put on since 



the treaty of Chunar, namely, an allowance to Sir 
Eyre Coote of 15,554 rupees per mouth, (being up- 
wards of 18,664Z. sterliug a year,) and an allowance 
to Trevor Wheler, Esquire, of 5,000 rupees per month 
(or QfiOOl. sterling and upwards a year) ; and the 
whole of the settled charges, not of a military na- 
ture, to British subjects, did amount to little less than 
140,000Z. yearly, and, if other allowances not includ- 
ed in the estimate were added, would greatly ex- 
ceed that sum, besides much more wliich may just- 
ly be suspected to have been paid, no part whereof 
had at that time been brought forward to any public 

XXXVII. That the commander of one of these 
corps, of whose burden the said Nabob did complain, 
was Lieutenant-Colonel Alexander Hannay, who did 
farm the revenues of certain districts called Baraitch 
and Goruckpore, which the said Hastings, in the ninth 
article of his instructions to Mr. Bristow, did estimate 
at twenty-three lacs of rupees, or 230,000Z., per an- 
num : but under his, the said Hannay's, management, 
the collections did very greatly decline; complaints 
were made that the countries aforesaid were harassed 
and oppressed, and the same did fall irto confusion, 
and at last the inhabitants broke out into a general 

XXXVIII. That the far greater part of the said 
heavy list was authorized or cniered by him, the said 
Warren Hastings, for the purpose of extending his 
own corrupt influence: for it doth appear, that, at 
the time when he did pretend, in conformity to the 
treaty of Chuuar aforesaid, to remove the Company's 

/ V ■ ii 






1 P -\ 
1 'I •- > 



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hi r I 

M' i ■ f 

servants, " cjViY and military, from the court and ser 
vice of the Vizier," he did assert that he thereby did 
" diminish hiH own influence, as well as that of his col- 
leagues, by narrowing the line of patronage" ; which 
proves that thu offices, pensions, and other emolu- 
ments aforesaid, in Oude, were of Ats patronage, as 
his patronage could not be diminished by taking away 
the said offices, Ac, unless the same had been sub- 
stantially of his gift. And he did, at the time of the 
pretended reformation aforesaid, express both his 
knowledge of the existence of the said excessive and 
abusive establishments, and his sense of his duty in 
taking them away: for in agreeing to the article iu 
the treaty of Chunar for abolishing the said establish- 
ments, he did declare himself " actuated solely by mo- 
tives of justice to the Nabob, and a regard to the 
honor of our national character"; and, according to 
his own representation, tne said servants of the Com- 
pany, civil and military, " by their numbers, their in- 
fluence, and the enormous amount of their salaries, 
pensions, and emoluments, were an intolerable burden 
on the revenues and authority of the Vizier, and ex- 
posed us to the envy and resentment of the whole coun- 
try, by excluding the native servants and adherents 
of the Vizier from the rewards of their services and 


»' i 

XXXIX. That the revenue of the country being 
anticipated, mortgaged, and dilapidated, by the coun- 
sel, concurrence, connivance, and influence, and often 
by the direct order of the said Warren Hastings, 
the whole civil government, magistracy, and admin- 
istration of justice gradually declined and at length 
totally ceased through the whole of the vast provinces 





wliich compose the territory of Oude, and no power 
was visible therein but that of the farmers of the rev- 
enue, attended by bodies of troops to enforce the col- 
lections ; insomuch that robberies, assassinations, and 
acts of every description of outrage and violence were 
perpetrated with impunity, — and even in the capital 
city of Luckuow, the seat of the sovereign power, 
there was no court of justice whatever to take cogni- 
zance of such offences. 

XL. That the said Warren Hastings, when he did 
interfere in the government of Oude, was obliged by 
his duty to interfere for the good purposes of govern- 
ment, and not merely for the purpose of extorting 
money therefrom and enriching his own dependants, 
— which latter purpose alone he did effect, in the man- 
ner before mentioned, but not one of the former. For 
the said Hastings, having procured the extraordinary 
powers given by and to himself by his delegation of 
the 3d of July, 1781, did declare the same to be for 
the purpose, among many others, " of assisting the 
Nabob Vizier in forming such regulations as may be 
necessary for the peace and good order of his govern- 
ment and the improvement of his revenue." And m 
consequence of the said powers, the said Warren 
Hastings did, in the treaty of Chunar, obtain an arti- 
cle from the Nabob by which the said Nabob did prom- 
ise to attend to his advice in the reformation of his 
civil administration ; and he did give certain instruc- 
tions to the Resident, Middleton, to which he did 
require him to yield the most implicit obedience, and 
did in one article thereof direct him to urge the Na- 
bob to endeavor gradually, if it could not be done at 
once, to establish courts oiadawlut [justice], and that 



' t' 


I' I' 




If m 

) ! 

i 'I 




the daroi/aJiH chief criminal magistrates], moulame$ 
[consulting or assistant lawyers], and other officers, 
should be selected by the ministers, with his, the 
Resident's, concurrence; and afterwards, in his in- 
structions to the Resident Bristow, desiring him to 
pursue the same object, he declared his opinion, " that 
the want of such courts, and the extreme licentious- 
ness occasioned thereby, is one of the most disreputa- 
ble defects in his Higlmess the Nabob's government, 
and that, while tliey do not exist, every man knows 
the hazard which he incurs in lending his money " ; 
but he did give him, the said Resident, no positive 
instruction concerning the same, supposing the estab 
lishment of such courts a matter of difficulty, and 
did therefore leave him a latitude in his proceedings 

XLI. That the said Resident Bristow did, how- 
ever, in conformity to the said instructions, at last 
given with such latitude, endeavor to prevail on the 
said minister gradually to introduce courts of justice 
for the cognizance of crimes, by beginning to establish 
a criminal court under a native judge, to judge accord- 
ing to the Mahomedan law in the city of Lucknow, 
But Hyder Beg Khan, a minister of the said Warren 
Hastings's nomination, and solely dependent upon 
him, did elude and obstruct, and in the end totally 
defeat, the establishment of the same. 

XLII. That the obstruction aforesaid, and the evil 
consequences thereof, were <' , represented to the 
said Hastings; and though the said Hastings had 
made it the fourtli article of a criminal charge against 
the Resident Middleton, " that he did not report to 



the Govornor-Genoral, or to the board, the progress 
which he had made from time to time in his endeavors 
to comply with his instructions, and that, if he met 
with any impediments in the execution of them, ho 
had omitted to state those impediments, and to apply 
for fresh orders upon them," yet he, the said Hastings, 
did give no manner of support to the Resident Bris- 
tow against the said Hyder Beg Khan, and did not 
even answer several of his letters, the said Bristow's 
letters, stating the said impediments, or take any no- 
tice of his remonstrances, but did at length revoke 
his owii instructions, declaring that he, the said Resi- 
dent, should not presume to act upon the same, and 
yet did not furnish him with any oi rs, upon which 
he might act, but did uphold the said Hyder Beg 
Khan in the obstruction by him given to the perform- 
ance of the first and fundamental duty o." all govern- 
ment, — namely, the administration of justice, and the 
protection of the lives and property of the subject 
against wrong and violence. 

XLin. That the said Hastings did afterwards pro- 
ceed to the length of criminating the Resident Bris- 
tow aforesaid for his endeavors to establish the said 
necessary court, as an invasion of the rights of the 
Nabob's government, — when, if the Nabob in his own 
proper person and character, and not the aforesaid 
Hyder Beg, (who was a creature of the said Hastings,) 
had opposed the reestablishment of justice in the said 
country, it was the duty of the said Hastings to have 
pressed the same upon him by every exertion of his 
influence. And the said Warren Hastings, in his 
pretended attention to the Nabob's authority, when 
exercised by his, the said Hastings's, minister, to 






prevent the establishraent of courts of justice for the 
protection of life and property, at the same time that 
he did not hesitate, in the case of the confiscation of 
the jagliires, and the proceedings against the mother 
and grandmotlier of the Nabob, totally to supersede 
his authority, and to foi his uiclinations in acts 
which ovorturnod all tne I .,s of property, and offered 
violence to all the sentiments of natural affection and 
duty, and accusing at the same time his instruments 
for not going to the utmost lengths in the execution 
of his said orders, is guilty of an high crime and mis- 

XLl 7. That the said Hastings did highly aggravate 
his offence in discountenancing and discouraging the 
reestablishment of magistracy, law, and order, in the 
country of Oude, inasmuch as he did in the eighth 
article of his instructions to the Resident order him 
to exercise powers which ought to have been exercised 
by lawful magistrates, and in a manner agreeable to 
law. And in the said article he did state the preva- 

lence of rebellion in the said country of Oude, as 

if rebellion could exist in a country in which there 
was no magistracy, and no protection for life or 
property, and in which the native authority had no 
force whatever, and in wiiich he himself states the 
exercise of British authority to be an absolute usur- 
pation ; and he did accordingly direct a rigorous pros- 
ecution against the offence of rebellion under such 
circumstances, but " with a fair and impartial inqui- 
ry," when he did not permit the establishment of 
those courts of justice and magistracy by which alone 
rebellion could be prevented, or a fair and impartial 
inquiry relative to the same could be had ; and par- 

f Hi 



liculaily he did instruct the said Rosidont to obtain 
tho Nabob's order for oiuploying some sure luoaiis 
for a[){)reiieudiug certain zemindars, aud particularly 
three, iu the instruction named, whom he, tho said 
Hastings, did cause to be apprehended upon what 
he calls good information, founded upon some facts 
to which ho asserts he has the testimony of several 
witnesses, " that they had the destruction of Colonel 
Hannay and the officers under his command as their 
immediate object, and ultimately the extirpation of 
the English influence and power throughout all tho 
Nabob's dominions," and that they did still persevere 
in their rebellious conduct without deviation, " though 
the Nabob's, and not our government, was tl\en tho 
object of it'' ; and he did direct the said Resident, if 
it should appear, " on a fair and regular inquiry, that 
their conduct towards the Nabob had been such as it 
had been reported to be, to insist upon tho Nabob's 
punishing them with death, aud to treat with the same 
rigor every zemindar and every subject who shall be 
the leader iu a rebellion against his .. Jiority." 

XLV. That the crime of the said Hastings, in his 
procedure aforesaid, was further highly aggravated 
by his having received information of several striking 
circumstances which strongly indicated the necessity 
of a regular magistracy and a legal judicature, from 
tho total failure of justice, affectiiig not only the 
subjects at large, but even the reigning family itself, 
— as also of the causes why no legal magistracy could 
exist, and why the jTinces of the reigning family were 
not only exposed to the attacks of assassins, but eveu 
to a want of the protection wiiicli might be liad from 
their servants aud attendants, who were driven frC' i 









If ^ 


*} 'i- 



thoir masters for want of that maintuuancQ which 
the princes, their mastens, could not procure even for 
themselves. And the circumstances aforesaid were 
detailed to him, the said Hastings, bj the Resident, 
Bristow, in a letter from Lucknow, dated the 29th 
January, 1784, to the Governor-General, the said 
Warren Hastings, and the Council of Bengal, iu the 
terms followuig. 

" The frequent robberies and murders perpetrated 
hi his Excellency's, the Vizier's, dominions, have been 
too often the subject of my representations to your 
honorable board. From the total want of police, 
hardly a day elapses but I am informed of some 
tragical event, whereof the bare recital is shocking to 
humanity. About two months since, an attempt was 
made to assassinate Rajah Ticket Roy, the acting 
minister's confidential agent ; but he happily escaped 
unhurt. Nabob Bahadur, his Slghnesa'g Mother, has 
not been so fortunate, as will appear from translations 
of two of his letters to me, No. 1, which I have the 
honor to inclose for your information. Although my 
feelings are sensibly hurt and my compassion strong- 
ly excited by the disgraceful and miserable state of pov- 
erty to which his Excellency's brothers are reduced, yet, 
situated as I am, it is not in my power to interfere 
with effect. My efforts on a former occasion failed 
of success, and my interposition now would only excite 
the resentment of the minister towards the unhappy 
sufferers, in consequence of their application to me, from 
whom ALONE, however, they hope for relief from their 
present distress, which, their near connection with the 
Vizier considered, is both shameful and unprece- 
dented. That no regular courts of justice have been 
established in this country is particularly pointed at 





in my instructions, as the most disreiiutab ct in 

his Higliness's government; yet tlio min. seems 
determined on abolishing oven tl, - ; ■ . iow of so neces- 
sary an institution . Tlio office of Chief Justice, as 
held by Moulavy Morobhio, was ever nugatory, but 
now it is sunk into the lowest contempt. The origi- 
nal establishment, inadequate as it was, is mouldering 
away, iind the officers now attached to it are literally 
starving, as no part of their allowance has been paid 
for above six months past. He himself has proposed 
to resign his appointment, being every way precluded 
from a possibility of exercising the duties of it." 

XLVI. That it appears by the said letter, and the 
papers therewith transmitted, as well as other docu 
ments in the said correspondence, that, in cunsequence 
of the distress brought upon the Nabob's finances, cer- 
tain of the princes, his brethren, the children of Sujah 
ul Dowlah, the late sovereign of the country, were 
put upon pensions unsuitable to their birth and rank, 
and by the mismanagement of the minister afore- 
said, (appointed by the said Warren Hastings,) for 
two years together no considerable part of the said 
inadequate pension was paid ; and not being able to 
maintain the attendants necessary for their protection 
in a city in which all magistracy and justice was abol- 
ished, they were not only liable to sufier the greatest 
extremities of penury, but their lives were exposed to 
the attempts of assassins : the condition of one of the 
said princes, called the Nabob Bahadur, being by him- 
self strongly expressed in three letters to the said Res- 
ident Bristow, — the first dated the 28th of December, 
1783 ; the second, the Tth of January, 1784 ; and the 
third, the 15th of January, 1784, — which letters 


I . I 




were duly transmitted, in the dispatch of the 29th of 
the same montli, to Warren Hastings, Esquire, and are 
as follow. 


fi ! , 

" Your own servant carried you the account of what 
he himself was an eye-witness to, after the afiair of 
last niglit. These are the particul?rs. About mid- 
night my aunt received twelve womids from a ruffian, 
of which she died. I also received six successive stabs, 
which alarmed the people of the house, who set up a 
shouting: whereupon the assassin run off. Besides 
being without food or the meant of providing any, this 
misfortune has befallen me. lam desirous of sending 
the coffin to your door. It is your duty, both for the 
sake of God and of Christ, to execute justice, and to 
inquire what harm I have done to the murderer suf- 
ficient to deserve assassination, or even injury. You 
now stand in the place of his Excellency the Vizier. I re- 
quest you will do me justice. What more can I say ? 

" P. S. I am also desirous to show you my wounds." 

From the tame, 29<A [Ithf^January, 1784. 

" You have been duly informed of all the circum- 
stances relative both to the murder of the innocent, 
and of my being wounded, as well by my former let- 
ter, as by the messenger whom you sent to inquire 
into the state of my health; and I have every reason 
to hope, from your known kindness, that you will not 
be deficient in seeking out the assassin. lam at this 
moment overwhelmed in misfortune. Whilst the blood 
is flowing from my wounds, neither I nor my children 
nor my servants have wherewithal to procure subsistence; 
nor have I it in my power either to purchase remedies 



or to reward the physician : it is for the sake of God 
alone that he attends me. Thus loaded with calamity 
upon calamity, I am unable to support life ; for I find 
no relief from any affliction either day or night. Do 
you now stand in the place of my father ; grant me 
fresh life by speedy acts of benevolence. 

" For these two last years his Excellency established 
a pension for me of twenty thousand rupees ; but I 
never received the full amount of it, either last year 
or the year before. Should it, however, be paid me, 
though inadequate to my desires, I shall still be en- 
abled to support myself. From the beginning of this 
year to the present time I have not received a farthing, 
nor do I expect any ; though, if you afford protection 
to the oppressed, all my wishes will be accomplished. 
I was desirous of waiting on you with my family, 
that you might be an eye-witness to their condition ; 
but I was advised not to stir out on account of my 
wounds. What more can I say ? * 






2%e following ExtractB are made from the Third Letter 
from the same Prince^ dated January 15, 1784. 

" The particulars of the late ai.d unforeseen misfor- 
tune with which I have been overwhelmed are not 
unknown unto you, — that the innocent blood of my 
aunt, the prop and ruler of my family, was shed, and 
in the same manner I, too, was wounded. Until now 
I feel the pain and affliction of my wounds ; and no 
person has regarded my solicitations for redress, sought 
after the assassin, and brought him to condign punish- 
ment, yourself excepted." —''In like manner as the 
Honorable Governor-General has adopted my brother 
Saadut Ali Khan for his son, and relieved him from 



the vexation, affliction, and dependence of this place, 
would it be extraordinary that you also should, iu 
your bounty and favor, consent to adopt me, who do 
not possess the necessaries of life, and permit me to 
attend you to whatever part of the world you may 
travel, whereby I shall at all times derive honor and 
advantage ? Formerly us three brothers, Saadut Ali, 
Mirza Jungly, and I, the poor and • ppressed, were, in 
the presence of our blessed father, whose soul rests 
iu heaven, treated alike. Now the ministers of this 
government put roe upon a footing with our younger 
brothers, who have lately left the zenanah, and whose 
expenses are small. On this scale, which is in every 
respect insufficient for my maintenance, they pay the 
pitiful allowance only when it is their pleasure to do it. 
My situation has for years past been increasing in 
wretchedness to a degree that lam in want of daily 
bread, and my servants and animals are dying of hunger. 
My distresses are so great that I have not been able to 
pay a daum to the surgeons for the cure of my wounds; 
and they, too, are discouraged from affording me their 
assistance or furnishing me with medicines. How, then, 
is it possible for me to exist ? Considering you as my 
patron, participating in my afflictions, I have repre- 
sented the circumstances concerning my situation; 
and I hope, from your friendship, that you will honor 
me with a favorable answer." 

•iTl I 

XLVn. The Resident, Bristow, did also receive a 
strong application from three others of the brethren of 
the reigning sovereign, called Mirza Hyder Ali, Mirza 
Ennayut Ali, and Mirza Syef Ali, representing their 
very pitiable case, in a letter of the 9th of March, 
1783, in which, among other particulars, are contained 
the following. 

1 fi 



"Our situation is not fit to be represented. For 
two years we have not received a hvhha on account of 
our tuncaw [assignment on the revenue], though the 
ministers have annually charged a lac of rupees, and 
never paid us anything. After all, we are the sons 
of Sujah id JDowlah ! It is surprising, having such 
a friend as you, our situation is arrived at that pass 
that we should be in distress for dry bread and clothes. 
Whereas you have done many generous acts, be 
pleased so to show us your favor, that by some means 
we may receive our allowances from the Company'f 
treasury, and not be obliged to depend upon and so- 
licit others for it." 

XLVin. Tliat one of the princes aforesaid, calleu 
the Mirza Jungly, about the beginning of the year 
1783, was '1 ■"?. to fly from the dominions of the 
Nabob of ' "> and to leave his country and con- 
nections; ;i " the Resident, Bristow, writing from 
Lucknow, 4... observed, " he went to try his fortune 
at other courts, in preference to starving at home, 
which might have been his fate, by all accounts, at 
this place." And the said prince sought for succor 
at the court of one of the neighboring Mahomedan 
princes ; but conceiving some disgust at the treatment 
he met with there, he departed from thence, and on 
the 8th of February, 1783, arrived at the Mahratta 
camp, while David Anderson, Esquire, was there in 
the character of Minister Plenipotentiary to the Com- 
pany, with a view, if his reception there should not 
prove answerable to his wishes, to pass on to the south- 
ward. And the said Anderson, probably considering 
this event as of very great importance to the honor of 
the British government, as well as to its interest, oa 

VOL. IZ. 8 





, ( 


the one hand, by exhibiting the son and brother of a 
sovereign prince, from whom the Company had re- 
ceived many millions of money, a fugitive from his 
country, and a wanderer for bread through the courts 
of India, and, on the other, the consequences which 
might ari'-c from the Mahrattas having in their pos- 
session aiKi under their influence a son of the late 
Nabob of Oude, did without delay advise Warren 
Hastings, Esquire, of the event aforesaid ; and he did 
also write to Mr. Bristow, the Resident at the court 
of tlie Nabob Vizier, several letters, of the 9th and 
20th of February, and of the 6th of March and 6th of 
April, 1783, in order that some sieps should be taken 
for his return and establishment in his own country. 
And the said Anderson did inform the Resident, Bris- 
tow, in his letter aforesaid, that, on the arrival of the 
fugitive prince, brother of the reigning sovereign of 
Oude, at the Mahratta camp, he did cause hie tent to 
be pitched close to that of Mr. Anderson ; but finding 
this not agreeable to the Mahratta general, Siudia, 
he afterwards removed : and that he showed a strong 
attachment to the English, and was inclined to throw 
himself upon their generosity ; that he was desirous 
of going to Calcutta, and declared, that, if he, the 
said Anderson, " would give him the smallest encour- 
agement, he would quit all his followers, and come 
alone, and would take up his residonce under his 
protection." And the said Anderson did declare, that 
he thought it " would be policy, and much to the cred- 
it of our government, that some provision should be 
made for Mirza Jungly in our territories." 

XLIX. That the said Bristow did represent the 
aforesaid circumstances to Hyder Beg Khan, minister 



to the Nabob of Oude, declaring it his opinion, " that 
his Highness's brother's thus taking refuge with a 
foreign prince is a rekoction upon the Vizier, and it 
would be advisable that an allowance should be granted 
to him upon the footing of his brothers, that he might 
remain in the presence." But the Nabob was induced 
to refuse to his brother any offer of any allowance 
beyond the two hundred pounds per month, allowed, 
but not paid, to his other brothers, — and which the 
said prince did observe to Mr. Anderson, " that it was 
not only inadequate to his expenses, but infinitely 
less " (as the truth was) " than what his Excellency 
has settled on many persons of inferior rank, who 
have not so good a claim to his support ; and that it 
would not be sufficient to enable him to live at Luck- 
now, where all his friends and relations weie, and so 
many of his inferiors lived in a state of affluence." 
In case, therefore, it could not be increased, he re- 
quested leave to live in the Company's provinces, or 
at Calcutta ; for that in any of these situations " he 
could with less difficulty regulate his expenses." And 
he did declare, that, if his request was granted to him, 
he would immediately quit all his prospects with Sin- 
dia. To these propositions he received a very discour- 
aging answer from his brother's minister, containing 
a positive and final refvisal of any increase of allowance, 
obtaining only the Nabob's permission to retire into 
the Company's provinces. But Mr. Anderson did 
not think himself authorized to take any steps for the 
prince's retreat into the said province without Sindia's 
concurrence, who, he observed, would use every art 
to detain him, and accordingly did offer him the com- 
mand of a battalion of infantry to be paid directly 
from his own treasury, and six thousand pounds step 


■,'ii h 



ling a year for keeping up a corps of horse, and to 
settle upon him a lauded estate of four thousand 
pounds a year as a provision for his wife and children : 
which honorable offers it appears he did accept, and 
did and doth remain in the Mahratta service. 

1 h^' 

{I 'I 

L. That, during the whole course of this trans- 
action, the said Warren Hastings was duly advised 
thereof, first by a very early letter from the said An- 
derson, and afterwards by the Resident, Bristow, who, 
on the 23d of April, 1783, transmitted to him his whole 
correspondence with Mr. Anderson. But what an- 
swer or instructions the said Warren Hastings did 
give to Mr. Anderson does not appear, he not having 
recorded anything upon that subject ; but it appears 
that to the Resident, Bristow, who required to be in- 
formed whether the reception of the fugitive prince 
aforesaid in the Company's provinces would meet his 
approbation, he gave no answer whatsoever : by which 
criminal neglect, or worse, with regard to a brother 
of an ally of the Company, who showed a strong at- 
tachment and preference to the English nation, and 
by suffering him, without any known effort to prevent 
it, to attach himself to the cause and fortunes of the 
Mahrattas, who, he, the said Hastings, well knew, did 
keep up claimb upon several parts of the dominions 
of Oude, and had with difficu'"^" been persuaded to 
include the Nabob in the trea of peace, he, having 
suffered him first to languish at home in poverty, and 
then to fly abroad for subsistence, and afterwards tak- 
ing no step and countenancing no negotiations for his 
return from his dangerous place of refuge, at the 
same time that several of his, the said Hastings's, 
creatures had each of them allowances much more 





considerable than would liare sufficed for the satisfac- 
tion and comfort of him, the said fugitive prince, was 
guilty of a high crime and misdemeanor. 

LI. That the indigent condition before related of 
the other brothers of the Nabob was also duly trans- 
mitted to the said Warren Hastings ; but he did nev- 
er order or direct any steps whatsoev i to be taken 
towards the relief of the family of a reigning prince, 
who were daily in danger of perishing by famine 
through the eflfect of his measures, and those of a per- 
son whom he supported in power against the will and 
Inclinations of the said prince and his family. 

LII. That the foregoing instances of the penury, 
distress, dispersion, and exile of the reigning family, 
as well as the general disorder in all the affairs of 
Oude, did strongly enforce the necessity of a proper 
use of the British influence (the only real government 
then existing) in the province aforesaid for a regula- 
tion of the economy of the Vizier's court, as well as 
for the proper administration of the public concerns, 
civil and military, which were in the greatest disorder ; 
and the said Warren Hastings was under obligation 
to provide for the same, and did himself understand 
it to be his duty so to do, and that he was therein 
warranted by tlie spirit of the treaty of Ciiunar, as 
well as by other universal powers of control, and 
even of supersession, supposed by him to exist in the 
relation between the British government and that of 
Oude ; and accordingly he did, in his instructions to 
the Resident Middleton, to which he required his 
most implicit obedience, direct him to an interference 
in and control upon all the affairs concerning the rev- 






enues, the military arrangements, and all the othei 
branches of the Nabob's government. 

LIII. That, upon his recall of the said Middleton, 
he, in his instructions to the Resident Bristow, dated 
23d of October, 1781 [1782 ?], did at large set forth 
the situation of the court and government of Oudo, 
the situation and character of the Nabob, of the acting 
minister, and of the British Resident at that court, and 
did plainly, distinctly, and without reserve, describe 
the extent of the authority to be exercised by thi; ., . 
of these persons, as well as the unqualified compliance 
to be expected from the two former. And he did ac- 
cordingly declare, that, "/roTn the nature of our connec- 
tion with the government of Oude, and from the Nabob's 
incapacity, a necessity will forever const, while we have 
the claim of a subsidy upon the resources of his coun- 
try, of exercising an influence, and frequently substi- 
tuting it ENTIRELY in the place of an avowed and 
constitutional authority, in the administration of his 
[the NahoVs'] government " ; and he did further in tlic 
said instructions, namely, in instruction the fourth, 
direct the said Resident in the words following : " I 
must have recourse to you for tb.e introduction of 
a new system in that government; nor can I omit, 
whilst I express my reliance on you for that purpose, 
to repeat the sentiments which I expressed in the ver- 
bal instructions which I gave you at your departure, 
that there can he no medium in the relation between the 
Resident and the minister, but either the Resident must 
he the slave and vassal of the minister, or the minister 
at the absolute disposal of the Resident.'^ And he, the 
said Hastings, did state, in the same article of the in- 
structions aforesaid, that, though the conduct of the 




said Hyder Beg Khfin had been highly reprehensible, 
and that he was ranch displeased thereat, he would 
prefer him to any other, on account of his ability and 
knowledge of business, with tlie following proviso, — 
" If he would submit to hold his office on such condi- 
tions as I require. He exists by his dependence on 
the influence of our government. It must be advis- 
able to try him by the mode of conciliation ; at the 
same time that in your final convergation with him it 
will be necessary to declare to him, in the plainest 
terms, the footing and conaition on which he shall be 
permitted to retain his place, with the alternative of 
a dismission, and a scrutiny into his conduct, if he 
refuses it. In the first place, I will not receive from 
the Nabob, as his, letters dictated by the spirit of op- 
position ; but shall consider every such attempt as an 
insult on our government. In the second place, I shall 
expect that nothing is done in his official character 
but with your knowledge and participation." 

LIV. That the said Hastings having described, in 
the manner aforesaid, the relative situation of the Res- 
ident and the minister, he did state also the relative 
situation of the said minister and his master, the Na- 
bob, declaring, "that the minister did hold wiihout 
control the unparticipated and entire administration, 
with all the powers annexed to that government, — 
the Nabob being, as he ever must be in the hands of some 
person, a mer", cipher in his " (the minister's). And 
having thus stated the subordination of the minister 
to the Resident, and the subordination of the Nabob 
to the minister, he did naturally declare, " that the 
first share of the responsibility would rest upon the 
said Resident " And he did further declare, " that 

r !l 





the other conditions did follow distinctly in tbeb 
places, because he did contider the HendetU at rupon- 
$iblefor them" 

LV. That, for the direction of the Resident in the 
exercise of so critical a trust, wherein all the true and 
substantial powers of government were in au invert- 
ed relation and proportion to the official and ostensible 
authorities, and in which the said Hastings did sup- 
pose the necessity constantly existmg for exercising 
an influence, and frequently for substituting eiUirely 
the British authority " in the place of the avowed 
and constitutional government," he, the said Hastings, 
did properly leave to the Resident a discretionary 
power for his deviation from any part of his instruc- 
tions, — interposmg a caution for his security and 
direction, that, as much as he could, he would leave 
the subject free for his, the sai-^ Hastings's, correction 
of it, and would instantly inform him or the board, 
according to the degree of its importance, with his 
reasons for it. 

LVI. Tliat, besides the in itution of the courts of 
justice, as before recited, four other principal objects 
in the reformation of the affairs of Oude were express- 
ly recommended to the Residents Middleton and 
Bristow, and must be understood to be tlie conditions 
upon which the said Hastings must have meant to have 
it understood that the acting minister of Oude was to 
hold his employment : namely, tlie limitation of the 
Nabob's personal expenses ; tiio reduction of the Na- 
bob's troops in number, and the change in arrange- 
ment ; the appointment of proper collectors for the 
revenues ; and the appointment of proper officers for 
all parts of the executive administration. 



LVn. Tliat the first object, namely, that of the 
limitation of the Nabob's personal expenses, and sep- 
arating them from the public establislimenta, he, the 
said Hastings, did state as the first and fundamental 
part of his regulation, and that upon wliich all the 
others would depend, — and did declare, " that, in 
order to prevent tlie Vizier's alliance from being a 
clog instead of an aid to the Company, the most estenr 
tial part is to limit and separate his personal disburse- 
ments from tlie public accounts : they must not exceed 
what iio lias received in any of the last three years." 
And as to the public treasury and disbursements, he, 
the said Hastings, did, in the said instructions, wholly 
withdraw them from the personal management or inter- 
ference of the Nabob, and did expressly order and di- 
rect " that they enould be under the sole management 
of the ministers, with the Resident's concurrence." 
And on the appointment of the Resident Bristow, in 
October, 1782, he, the said Hastings, did order and 
direct him in every point of the insitructions to Middle- 
ton not revoked or qualified by his then instructions, 
to which he did require his, tlie said Resident Bris- 
tow's, " most attentive and literal obedience." 

^;i \tW^- 

•\ *^J 



'i^- ' 1 *' rfpl 


f vmh 


LVIII. That the said Resident Bristow did, in 
consequence of the renewal to him of the said in- 
structions as aforesaid, endeavor to limit and put in 
order the Nabob's expenses ; but he was in tliat par- 
ticular traversed and counteracted, and in tlie end 
wholly defeated, by the minister, Hyder Beg Klian. 
And though the obstructions aforesaid, agreeably to 
the instructions given to Middlcton, and to him, the 
said Bristow, were represented to the said Warren 
Ifastings by the Resident aforesaid, yet the said War 






ren Hustings did give no kii.J ,r su^ p- :► to tho said 
Resident, or tuko any steps tow .^ds eM.l)i:.itr 1,1m, the 
said Resident, to efftauate the said necessary limita- 
tion and dist. ilmtion of expenses, by himselC, the said 
Hastuigs, ordered and prescribed ; nor, if ho disap- 
proved the pro<;ocding8 of the said Resident, did he 
give him any instruction for tlie forbearance of tlin 
same, or for the exerting his duty in any other mode; 
nor did lie call for any illustr ition from him of any- 
thinjr doubtful in his correspondence, nor state to 
him any complaint made privately of his conduct, in 
order to receive thereon an explanation ; but he did 
leave him to pursue at his discretion the extensive 
powers before described, to effect the reformation 
which he was directed io accomplish, under the re- 
sponsibility denounced to him as aforesaid, if he 
should fail therein, as he was supposed to l)e substan- 
tially invested with all the powers of government. 

LIX. That, instead of the said support or instruc- 
tion, he, the said Hastings, did countenance, or more 
probably cause or direct, a representation to be made 
to him by tho acting minister of the Nabob of Oude 
complaining grievously of the proceedings of the Res^ 
ident aforesaid, as usurpations on the Nalwb's author- 
ity and indignities on his person. And although he, 
the said Hastings, did instruct the Resident, Bristow 
to inform the said Hyder Hog Khun that he would not 
receive from the Nabob, as hh, le. . directed by the 
spirit of opposition, but should consider every such 
attempt as his, the minister's, as an insult on our 
government, yet he did receive as his the Nabob's 
own letters, and as written from tlie impressions on 
his own mind, and as the suggestions of his own judg- 



mont, letters to tlio same fleet as tho**e " uteii bv 
tlio minister, although ho lid declared up<;n record 
that the said " Nabol) was a more cipher iu lis, tl 
Baid niiitiKtor'tn, hands," and "that h< had dannl tu 
use both the Ni"J''l)'s imme, id even ii s seal flixed 
to letters citlior mroi-tcd In ino Nabob or wnit -u a» 
from him without )us ktii>\Ni Igo,'' und although he 
did as«^>;rt or record as ifoicsaid. that, in a letter 
which ho lately roceivci fnun tlio Nabob, the 
luuiister had the presuin|ition to malce the Na!»ob de- 
clare ihat which wn tnie to he JaUe, aiid that "his 
makhiij use of tbo Nabob in such a mauier did ^how 
how thin the veil was by which he eovi^red h< own 
act», lud that sucli artifices would only tend to make 
then the more criminal fmra the faUtnood and 'a- 
plicity with which ihey were associated.'' 


LX. That the sail Hastings did act upon the let- 
ters pretended to l)e w i iften by tlie Nabob, as well as 
on those actually written 'y tli ■ minister withon pre- 
viously comiiiunicating the m ter of Uie said com- 
plaint *o the said Resident, a^ i tlid give credit to the 
same, and coming, as afore^ i ). iiom a person by him- 
self, tlio said Hahtings, chugcd with artifice, false- 
hood, uud duplicity, and with abusing to his own evil 
purjioscs tiie name and -'ul ol his master witiioiithis 
kniiwb'i"', and without : previous in' liry into the 
facts : A circumstances and did there ground an 
accusaiiou against the Siid R 'sii ent. Bristow before 
the ! lard a? Calcutta, in vvhich he d d n Teseiu i j 
couuuct of the said Bris^DW, in attempting to limit 
the household expanses of the Nabob, as an indignity 
•■ hich no man living, however moi i his rank in life, 
or iependeat his condition iu it, v mid permit to bt 





exercised by any other, but with the want or forfeiture 
of every manly principle." And he did further ac- 
cuse the said Bristow for that, in his proceedings in 
the regulation of the Nabob's household, " he should 
receive to himself, or Mr. Cowper for him, or a treas- 
urer for both, (for the arrangement has never been 
V ell defined,) the money assigned for the support of 
the Nabob's household, — issue it as he pleased, not to 
the Nabob, but to the menial officers of his household, 
— dispose of his superfluous horses, and other cattle, 
— determine how many elephants were necessary to 
the state of the Vizier of the Empire, the number of 
domestics for his attendance, and pry into the kitchen 
for the purpose of ascertaining the quantity of victuals 
which ought to be dressed in it, — control the accounts 
of these disbursements, — and appropriate to his own 
use (for that the consequence was inevitable, if he 
chose it) the residue produced by those economical 

LXI. That the said charge is malicious and insidi- 
ous ; because the attempt to introduce proper officers 
for the management of household expenses so consid- 
erable that the said Hastings has stated the allotment 
for the same at three hundred thousand pounds ster- 
ling yearly, and that other accounts have carried it 
to four hundred thousand pounds sterling and up- 
wards, and to keep proper and regular accounts there- 
of, was a necessary regulation, and agreeable to the 
dignity of the Nabob, and by no means a degradation 
either of his person or authority, which was specially 
provided for in the regulations, as no expense could 
be incurred but by his own personal warrant under 
his sign manual ; nor dotli there appear therein any- 

il / 




thing but what is of absolute necessity to prevent em- 
bezzlement to his prejudice. And the said Hastings 
hath declared, in the fifth article of the instructions 
to the said Resident, that no administration can be 
properly conducted without regular offices ; and that 
in the whole province of Oude "there was not one, 
the whole being engrossed by the minister " : of which 
minister, in the fourteenth aruolo, he declares his 
suspicion that the Nabob did not receive the whole 
and punctual payment of the sum assigned for the 
purpose of the household, but that some part had 
been by him withheld from the Nabob; and that, 
from private information he had lately received, he 
had reason to believe that this was actually the case. 
And the said Hastings well knew that the Nabob's 
household had been ill conducted, that the allowances 
of his servants had not been paid, that his distress 
was scandalous, and that his nearest relations were in 
a famishing condition ; and the said Hastings did also 
well know that the household of the Nabob was pro- 
vided for or neglected, not at his own discretion, but 
at that of the said Hyder Beg Khfin ; and he did, in 
the fourteenth article aforesaid, instruct the Resident, 
Bristow, to show every ostensible and external mark 
of respect to the Nabob, in order to induce him to 
become himself the mover of every act necessary for 
the advancing of his own interests and the dischorge 
of his debts to the Company, — declaring, "that they 
never could be eflfected while the minister retained 
that ascendency over him which he at present holds 
by the means of a nearer and more private inter- 
course, and by affecting to be the mediator of his 
rights against the claims of our government." And 
the said Hastings did further well know that there 





was no way of ascertaining the payment of the assign- 
ments for the Nabob's household, either for the gen- 
eral purposes of their destination or to the particular 
objects to which they ought to be applied, without 
regular offices of receipt and of account, which might 
prevent the said minister, Hyder Beg Kh&n, or the 
British Resident, or any other, from embezzling or 
misapplying the same. But the total want of offices 
aforesaid in every department of government did fur- 
nish occasion of concealing all frauds, clandestine 
presents, or pensions to a Govemor-GJeneral, Com- 
mander-in-Chief, or other servant of the Company. 

LXn. That the said \\'arren Hastings, who did pre- 
tend so deep a concern lor tiie indignities supposed 
to be suffered by the Nabob merely in the limitation 
and regulation of unnecessary expenses relative to his 
kitchen, domestics, <fec., did show no attention or com- 
passion to the said Nabob, when, in the year 1779, 
the said Nabob represented, that the pensions of hia 
old servants for thirty years, the expenses of his family 
and kitchen, together with the jaghires of his grand- 
mother, mother, and aunts, and of his brothers and 
dependants, f^ven for their support, were not regulat- 
ed, but stopped. 

LXIII. That the other articles of regulation, name- 
ly, the reform of the troops in number and in arrange- 
ment, the appointment of proper collectors for the 
revenues, and the general constitution of offices for 
the executive administration, were in like manner 
totally defeated by the said Hyder Beg Khdn. And 
the said Hastings did receive a charge from him, and 
did adopt it as his own, representing the endeavors 




of the Resident to act in the regulations aforesaid 
agreeably to the spirit of his instructions, and in con- 
fidence of the powers vested in and the responsibility 
imposed upon him, the said Resident, as usurpations 
of the authority and prerogative of the Nabob ; and he, 
the said Hastings, did make criminal charges thereon 
against the said Resident, Bristow, of which charges 
the Council Board did, on hearing the same, and th« 
defence of the said Bristow, fully acquit him. 

LXIV. That the said Hastings, by abetting Hyder 
Beg KhSn, a person described by him as aforesaid, in 
his opposition to all the plans of necessary reformation 
proposed by the said Hastings himself, and having 
suggested no other whatever in lieu thereof, to answer 
the purposes for which he had stipulated in the treaty 
of Chunar the interference of the Resident in every 
branch of the Nabob's government, did thereby frus- 
trate every one of the good ends proposed by him in 
the said treaty of Chunar, and did grossly abuse his 
trust in giving the exorbitant powers before recited, 
and asserting them to exist in the British Resident, 
without suffering them even in appearance to answer 
any of the proper and justifiable ends for which any 
power or influence can or ought to exist in any gov- 





LXV. That there is just ground to violently pre- 
sume that not only the letters in the name of the 
Nabob aforesaid were dictated to him by his minister, 
Hyder Beg Khdn, in whose hands the said Hastings 
has described his master to be " a mere cipher," Ac, 
but which Hyder Beg was the known instrument of 
the said Hastings, but that the conduct and letters of 


Wi >i 



complaint of the said Hyder Beg were in effect and 
ubstance prescribed and dictated to liim by the said 
Warren Hastings, or his secret agent, Palmer, by his 
direction : because it is notorious that the powers of 
the said Hyder Beg were solely supported by him, 
the said Hastings, who, according to the state of fa- 
Tor or displeasure in which he stood, hath frequently 
promised him support or threatened him with dismis- 
sion and punishment, and therefore it is not to be 
thought that he would take so material a step as to 
oppose the Company's Resident, acting under the in- 
st^'ictions of the Governor-General and Council, and to 
accuse him with so much confidence, and in a manner 
so different from the usual style of supplication on 
all other occasions employed by that court, if he had 
not been previously well assured that his writing in 
that manner would be pleasing to the person upon 
whom he solely depended for his power, his fortune, 
and perhaps for his life ; — secondly, because, when it 
suited the purposes of the said Hastings on a former 
occasion, that is, in the year 1784 [1781 ?], to remove 
the Resident Bristow aforesaid from his office, a letter 
from the Nabob was laid before the Council Board at 
Calcutta, proposing, that, in order to prevent the effects 
of the said Bristow's application to Europe for redress, 
the said Hastings should send him drafts of letters 
which he, the said Nabob, would write in his own name 
and character to the King, to his Majesty's ministers, 
and to the Court of Directors, expressing himself, in 
the letter aforesaid, in the words following, viz., " To 
prevent his [Bristow's] applying to Europe, send me, 
if you think proper, the drafts of letters which /may 
write to the King, the Vizier, and the chiefs of the 
Company "; — thirdly, that, though the said Hastings, 



and his secret agent, Palmer, did pretend and posi- 
tively assert that they had no share in the letters 
aforesaid from the Nabob and his minister, there was 
an original note to the Nabob's letters of accusation, 
referring to distinct parts and specified numbers of 
the agent Palmer's secret correspondence with the 
said Warren Hastings, and the said letter, with the 
said reference, was, through inadvertence, laid before 
the board. 


LXVI. That the said Warren Hastings, having 
thrown the government of Oude into irreat confusion 
and distress, and thereby prevented tlie discliarge of 
the debt, or pretended debt, to the Company, did, by 
all the said intrigues, machinations, and charges, aim 
at the filling the said office of Resident at Oude with 
his own dependants or by himself personally ; as it 
appears that he did first propose to place in the said 
office his secret agent. Palmer, and that afterwards, 
when he was not able to succeed tlicrein, he did 
propose nominally to abolish the said office, but in 
effect to fill it by himself, — proposing to the Council 
and rendering himself responsible (but not in fortune) 
for the payment of the Company's debt within a cer- 
tain given time, if he were permitted and commis- 
sioned by the Council to act for the board in that 
province, and did inform them that he was privately 
well assured that in a few days he should receive .a 
invitation to that effect ; and he did state, (as in the 
year 1781 he had stated as a reason for his former 
delegation,) " that the state of the country was so 
disordered in its revenue and administration, and the 
credit and influence of the Nabob himself so n^uch 
shook by the late usurpation of his authority, and the 

i ! 





contests which attended it, as to require the accession 
of an extraneous aid to restore the powers and to 
reanimate the constitution of his governmeut," — 
although he, the said Hastings, did for a long time 
before attribute the weakness of his governmeut to 
an extraneous interference. And the said Council, 
on his engagement aforesaid, did consent thereto; 
and he did accordingly receive a commission, ena^ 
bling him to act in the affairs of Oude, not only as 
the Resident might have done, but as largely as 
the Council-General might legally delegate their own 

LXVn. That the said Warren Hastings, in ac- 
cepting the said commission, did subject his character 
and the reputation of his office to great imputations 
and suspicions, by taking upon himself an inferior 
office, out of which another had upon his intrigues 
been removed by a perpetual obstruction which ren- 
dered it impossible for him to perform his duty or to 
obey his instructions; and he did increase the said 
grounded suspicions by exercising that office in a gov- 
ernment from whence it was notorious he had him- 
self received an unlawful gift and present from the 
ministers, and in which he had notoriously suffered 
many, and had himself actually directed some, acts 
of peculation, by granting various pensions and emol- 
uments, to the prejudice of the revenue of a distressed 
country, which he was not authorized to grant. 

LXVIII. That the said Warren Hastings did pro- 
ceed unto the said province of Oude under color of 
providing a remedy for the disorders described to bo 
existing in the same, and for the recovery of the 




Company's pretended debt. And the said Warren 
Hastings, who had thought fit to recall the Company's 
Resident, appointed to that office by the Court of Di- 
rectors, and to suspend his office, did, notwithstand- 
ing, of his own choice and selection, and on his own 
mere authority, take with hira in his progress a large 
retinue, " and a numerous society of English gentle- 
men to compose his family," which he represents as 
necessary, although, in a letter from that very place 
to which he took that very numerous society, he 
informs the Court of Directors " that his own con- 
sequence and that of the nation he represents are 
independent of show." And after his arrival there, 
he, the said "Warren Hastings, did write fi-om Luck- 
now, the capital of that province, a letter, dated the 
80th of April, 1784, to the Court of Directors, in 
which are several particulars to the following pur- 
port or tenor, and which he points out to the Direc- 
tors " to be circumstances of no trivial information," 
namely, — " that he had found that the lands in that 
province, as well as in some parts more immediately 
under the Company, have suffered in a grievous man- 
ner, being completely exhausted of their natural 
moisture by the total failure of one entire season of 
the periodical rains," with a few exceptions, which 
were produced only " by the uncommon labor of the 
husbandman." And in a letter to Edward Wheler, 
Esquire, a member of tlie Council-General, from Be- 
nares, the 20th of September, 1784, he says, that " the 
public revenues had declined with the failure of the 
cultivation in three successive years ; and all the stores 
of grain which the providence of the husbandmen, (as 
he was informed is their custom,') in defiance of 
the vigilance of the aumils [collectors], clandestinely 

'■i' i . 




Ij ii 




• ■ i- « 

retervedfor their ovm use, were of course exhausted, 
in which state no person would accept of the charge 
of the collections on a positive engagement ; nor did 
the rain fall till the 10th of July." And in another 
letter, dated from Benares, the 1st of October fol- 
lowing, he repeats the same accounts, and that the 
" country could not bear further additions of expense : 
that it had no inlets of trade to supply the issues that 
were made from it " (the exceptions stated there be- 
ing inconsiderable) ; " therefore every rupee which is 
drawn into your treasury [the Company's] from its 
circulation will accelerate the period at which its 
ability must cease to pay even the stipulated subsidy." 
Notwithstanding this state of the country, of which 
he was well apprised before he left Calcutta, and the 
poverty and distress of the prince having been fre- 
quently, but in vain, represented to him, in order to in- 
duce him to forbear his oppressive exactions, he did, 
in order to furnish the Coimcil with a color for per- 
mitting him to recall the Company's Resident, and to 
exercise the whole powers of the Company in his own 
person, without any check whatsoever, or witness of 
his proceedings, except the persons of his own pri- 
vate choice, make the express ad positive engagement 
aforesaid, which, if understood of a real and substan- 
tial discharge of debt for the relief of the total of the 
Company's finances, was grossly fallacious: because 
at the very time he must have been perfectly sensible, 
that, in the then state of the revenues and country of 
Oude, (which are in effect the Company's revenues 
and the Company's country,) the debt or pretended 
debt aforesaid, asserted to be about five hundred thou- 
sand pounds, or thereabouts, could not be paid with- 
out contracting another debt at an usurious interest, 




without encroaching on the necessary establishmonts 
or on private property or on the pay of the army, or 
without grievous oppression of the country, or all 
these together. And it dofh appear that one hundred 
thousand pounds towards the said payment of debts 
was borrowed at Calcutta by the Nabob's agent there, 
but at what interest is not known ; it appears also 
that other sums were borrowed for arrear of the 
interest, on which forty thousand pounds sterling ap- 
pears in the Company's claims for the current year, 
and that various deducti(ms were made from the jag- 
hires restored to the Begums, as well as other parts 
of the Nabob's fkmily ; and it did and doth appear 
that an arrear is still due to the old and new bri- 
gade, — but whether the same be growing or not 
doth not appear : yet he hath not hesitated to assert 
tliat he had " provided for the complete discharge, in 
one year, of a debt contracted by the accumulation <if 
many, and from a country who.sti resources have been 
wasted and dissipated by three successive years of 
drought and one of anarchy." But the said Hastuigs 
never did even realize tlie payments to be made in 
the first year, (as he confesses in the said letter,) 
except by an anticipation of the second ; and though 
he states in his letter aforesaid the following facts 
and engagements, that is to say, •' that a recovery of 
so large a part of your property [the Company's] will 
afford a seasonable and substantial relief to the neces- 
sities of your government, and enable it (for such is 
my confident hope) to begin on the reduction of your 
debt at interest before the conclusion of this year ( I 
mean the year of this computation)." Whereas the 
said Warren iuistingr} did apply the whole produce 
of the revenue to the mere pay of some part of the 




'\ ,1 i 




British army ia Oude; and did not mention in his 
correspondence that he had remitted any money 
whatsoever to Calcutta, nor to any other place, (ex- 
cept the fifty thousand pounds taken from Almas All 
Kli&n, and said to be remitted to Surut,) for the said 
" substantial relief," in consequence of the said pre- 
tended "recovery of property," — admitting that it 
had been suggested to him, and not by him denied, 
that he had "disappointed the popular expectation 
by not adopting the policy which he had, on the con- 
ception of better grounds, rejected ; nor did he begin 
the reduction of the interest debt " at the time stat- 
ed, nor at any time ; but the whole (he well knowing 
the state of the country from whence the resources 
aforesaid were by him promised) was a premeditat- 
ed deceit and imposition on the Board of Council, 
his colleagues, and on the Court of Directors, his 


I, . ^ Ml 


LXIX. That no traces of regulation appear to 
have been adopted by the said Warren Hastings 
during his residence at Lucknow, in conformity to 
the spirit and intentions of the treaty of Chunar, or 
of his instructions to Middleton and Bristow, or of 
the proposed objects of his own commission. But he 
did, in lieu thereof, pretend to free the Nabob's gov- 
ernment from the interference of the Company's ser- 
vants, and the usurpation (as he i lUed it) of a Resi- 
dent, and thereby to restore it to its proper tone and 
energy ; whereas the measures he took were such as 
to leave no useful or responsible superintendence in 
the British, and no freedom in the Nabob's govern- 
ment : for he did confirm the sole, unparticipated, and 
entire administration, with all the powers annexed to 



the gorernment, on the minister, Hyder Beg Kh&n, 
to whom he prevailed on the Nabob Vizier to commit 
tlie entire charge of his revenues, although he knew 
that his master was a cipher in his hands, — that he 
" liad affixed his seal to letters wri en without his 
knowledge, and such as evidently tended to promote 
Hyder Beg Khan's influence and interest," —that his 
said master did not consider him as a minister of his 
choice, but as an instrument of his degradation, — 
that " he exists as a minister by his dependence on 
the Calcutta government, and that the Nabob himself 
Iiad no other opinion of him, — that it is by its declared 
and most obvioui support alone that he could maintain 
his authority and influence." And in his instructions 
to his secret agent. Major Palmer, dated 6th of May, 
1782, to ease his mind and remove his jealousy with 
regard to British interference, he did instruct him, 
♦' that much delicacy and caution will be required in 
your declarations on this subject, lest they should be 
construed to extend to an immediate change in the 
administration of his affairs, or the instruments of it. 
Their persons must be considered as sacred, while they 
act with the participation of our influence. This dis- 
tinction the Nabob understands ; nor will it be either 
necessary or proper to allude to it, unless he himself 
should first introduce the subject." And the said 
Hastings did assume, as to a dependant of the lowest 
order, to prescribe to him the conditions on which he 
is to hold his place, — to threaten him with scrutinies 
into his conduct, with dismission, with punishment, 
— that he was guilty of falsehood and duplicity, and 
that he had made his master assert what was true to 
be false, — that he suspected he had withheld from 
his master what he ought to have paid to him, — that 


U 'I* 

^*: f.:*' 

>. : 'i 

11 • 

A .' 

i hi-, 



the event of his having prevailed on tlio Nalwb to 
inti-ust him as aforesaid was, according to his, the 
said Hastings's, own letter, written to the said Ilyder 
Beg KhOn himself, "an accumulation of distress, 
debasement, and dissatisfaction to the Nabob, and of 
disappointment and disgrace to me. Every measure 
whicii he had himself proposed, and to winch he had 
solicited my assistance, has been so conducted as to 
give him cause of displeasure ; there are no officers 
established by which his affairs could bo regularly 
conducted ; mean, incapable, and indigent men have 
been appointed aumils of the districtB, without au- 
thority, and without the means of personal protection ; 
some of them nave been murdered by the zemindars' 
and those zemindars, instead of punishment, have 
been permitted to retain their zemindaries with inde- 
pendent authority ; all the other zemmdars suffered to 
rise up in rebellion, and to insult the authority of the 
sircar, without any attempt made to suppress them ; 
and the Company's debt, instead of being discharged 
by the assignments, and extraordinary sources of 
money provided for that purpose, is likely to exceed 
even the amount at which it stood at the time in 
which the arrangement wit^i his Excellency was 
concluded. The growth of these evih was early made 
known to me, and their effects foreboded in the same order 
and manner as they have since come to pass. In sucli 
a state of calamity and disgrace, I can no longer re- 
main a passive spectator ; nor would it bo becoming 
to conceal my sentiments, or qualify the expression 
of them. I now plainly tell you, that you are answer- 
able for every misfortune and defect of the Nabob 
Vizier's government." And after giving orders, and 
expressing some hope? of better behavior, he adds, 

I: ) i 



M If I am disappointed, you will impose on me tlio 
painful and humiliating necessity of ackaowledjring 
to him tliat I have been deceived, and of recommend- 
ing the examination of your conduct to his juMi^ic 
both for the redress of his own and the Compan) '^ 
grievances, and for the injury sustained by both in 
their mutual connection. Do not rtyly to me, that 
what I have writtt !i is from the suggestion of your 
enemies; nor imagine ut I have indticed myself to 
write in such plain and declaratory terms, without 
a clear insight into uH the consequences uf it, and k 
fixed determination upt u them." 

LXX. That the aforesaid being the tenure of the 
power of the said minister, and such his character, as 
given by the said Warren Hastings himself, who did 
originally compel the Nabob to receive him, who did 
constantly support him against the Nabob, his muster, 
as well as against the Company's Resident, — the de- 
livering over to such a person his master, his family, 
his country, and the care of the British interests 
therein, without control or public inspection, was an 
high crime and misdemeanor. 

LXXI. That the next person whom the said Hast- 
ings did invest with power in the said country was a 
certain opulent and powerful native manager of rev- 
enue, called Almas Ali Khan, closely connected with 
the said Hyder Beg Khan, and to whom the said Hy- 
der Beg Khan, as the said Hastings has admitted, 
"had intrusted the greatest part of his roveiiP-i, with- 
out any pledge or security for his fidelity." And af- 
terwards the said Hastings charges the said Almas 
Ali with an intention of removing from the Nabob's 







dominions: he states, "as taking with him," and 
therefore being possessed of, " an immense treasure, 
the fruits of his embezzlements and oppressions, and 
an army raised for its protection." 

LXXII. That the said Warren Hastings was, or 
pretended to be, impressed with the evil character, 
dangerous designs, and immoderate power of the said 
Almas Ali ; that he did insert among his instructions 
to the Resident Bristow an order of a dangerous and 
unwarrantable nature, in which, upon his, the said 
Hastings's, simple allegation of oflfences, not accurate- 
ly described or specified, with regard either to the 
fact, the nature of the offence, or the proof, he was re- 
quired to urge the Nabob to put him to death, with 
many qualifications in the said instructions, full of 
fraud and duplicity, calculated to insnare the said 
Resident Bristow, and to throw upon him the respon- 
sibility of the conduct of the said Almas Ali Khan, if 
he should continue at, large contrary to his orders, or 
to subject him, the said Resident, to the shame and 
scandal of apprehending and putting him to death by 
means which, in the circumstances, must necessarily 
be such as would be construed into treachery, and he, 
the said Almas Ali Elian, being from nature and sit- 
uation suspicious and watchful, and being at that 
very time in the collection, or farmer of the most im- 
portant part of the revenues, witli an extensive juris- 
diction annexed, and at the head of fourteen thousand 
of his own troops, and having been recently accepted 
by the Resident Middleton as security for large sums 
of money advanced by the bankers of Benares to the 
use of the East India Company ; which orders (if the 
said Resident would or could have executed them) 



must have raised an universal alarm among all tlie 
considerable men of the country concerned in the 
government, and would have been a means of sub- 
verting the public credit of tlie Company, by the mur- 
der of a person engaged for very great sums of money 
tliat had been advanced for their use. And the said 
instruction is as foUoweth. 

" If any engagement shall actually subsist between 
them at the time you have charge of the Residen- 
cy, it must, however exceptionable, be faithfully ob- 
served ; but if he has been guilty of any criminal of- 
fence to the Nabob, his master, for which no immu- 
nity is provided in the engagement, or he shall breaii 
any one of the conditions of it, I do most strictly en- 
join you, and it must be your special care to endeav- 
or, either by force or surprise, to secure his person and 
bring him to justice. By bringing him to justice I 
mean, tliat you urge the Nabob, on due conviction, to 
punish him with death, as a necessary example to deter 
others from the commission of the like crimes ; nor 
must you desist till this is etfected. I cannot pre- 
scribe the means ; but to guard myself against the 
obloquy to which I may be exposed by a forced mis- 
construction of this order by those who may hereafter 
be employed in searching our records for cavils and 
informations against me, I think it pro{)er to forbid 
and protest against the use of any fraudulent artifice 
or treachery to accomplish the end which I have pre- 
scribed; and as you alone are privy to the order, you 
will of course observe the greatest secrecy, that it 
may not transpire : but I repeat my recommendation 
of it, as one of the first and most essential duties of 
your office." 














LXXni. That, among the reasons assigned for 
putting to death the said Almas Ali, which the said 
Hastings did recommend directly and repeatedly to 
the Resident, " as one of the first and most essential 
duties of his office," was, in substance, " that, by his 
extensive trust with regard to the revenues, he had 
been permitted to acquire independency ; that the 
means tliereof had been long seen and the effects 
thereof foretold by every person acquainted with the 
state of government, except those immediately inter- 
ested in it"; and he, the said Warren Hastings, did 
also charge the said Almas Ali with embezzlement 
of the revenues and oppression of the people ; and 
nothing appears to disprove the same, but much to 
give ground to a presumption that the said Almas Ali 
did grievously abuse the power committed to him, as 
farmer and collector of the revenue, to the great op- 
pression of the inhabitants of the countries which had 
been rented to him by Hyder Beg Kh&n with the 
knowledge and consent of the said Warren Hastings. 

LXXIV, That the Resident, Bristow, declining the 
violent attempt on the life of Almas Ali deceitfully 
ordered by the said Warren. Hastings, did, on weighty 
reasons, drawn from the spirit of the said Hastings's 
own instructions, recommend that liis, the said Almas 
Ali Khan's, farms of revenue, or a great part of them, 
should be, on tlie expiration of his lease, taken out 
of his hail' is being too extensive, and supplying 
the means oi a dangerous power in tlie country ; but 
yet he, the said Warren Hastings, did not only con- 
tinue him in the possession of the said revenues, but 
did give to him a new lease thereof for the term of 
five years. And on tliis renovation and increase of 




trust, the said "Warren Hastings did not consent to 
produce the informer upon whose credit he had made 
his charge of capita^ crimes on the said Almas Ali, 
and had directed him to be put to death, or call upon 
him to make £ od his charges ; but, instead of this, 
totally changing his relation to the said Almas Ali, 
did himself labor to procure from all parts attestations 
to prove him not guilty of the perfidy and disloyalty 
of which the said Hastings himself appears to have 
been to that very time his sole accuser, as he hath 
since been his most anxious advocate : but though he 
did use many endeavors to acquit Almas Ali of his 
intended flight, yet concerning his embezzlements and 
oppressions, the most important of all charges relative 
to that of the revenue and collection, he, the said 
Hastings, hath made no inquiry whatever; by which 
it might appear that he was not as fully guilty there- 
of as he had always represented him to be. But some 
time after he, the said Warren Hastings, had arrived at 
Lucknow, in the year 1784, he suggested to the said 
Almas Ali Khan the advance to the Company's use 
of a sum of money amounting to fifty thousand pounds 
or thereabouts ; and the said suggested advance was 
(as the said Warren Hastings asserts, no witness or 
document of the transaction appearing) " cheerfully 
and without hesitation complied with, considering it as 
an evidence seasonably offered for the general refuta- 
tion of the charges of perfidy and disloyalty " : which 
practice of charging wealthy persons with treason and 
disloyalty, and afterwards acquitting them on the 
payment of a sum of money, is highly scandalous to 
the lienor, justice, and govenimont of Great Britain ; 
und the offenio is highly aggravated by the said Hast- 
ings's declaration to the Court of Directors that the 




charges against Almas Ali Khan have been too labo- 
riously urged against him, and carried at one time to 
Buch an excess as had nearly driven him to abandon 
his country "/or the pregervation of his life and honor" 
and thus to give a " color to the charges themselves," 
when he, the said Warren Hastings, did well know 
that ho himself did consider as a crime, and did make 
it an article in a formal accusation against the Resi- 
dent Middleton, that ho did not inform him, the said 
Hastings, of the supposed treasons of Almas Ali Khin, 
and of his design to abandon the country, when he 
himself did most laboriously urge the charges against 
him, and when no attempt appears to have been made 
against the life of the said Almas Ali KhSn except by 
the said Warren Hastings himself. 

LXXV. Tliat the sum of fifty thousand pounds 
sterling, or thereabouts, publicly taken by the said 
Warren Hastings, as an advance for the use of the 
Company, if given as a consideration or fine, on ac- 
count of the renewal for a long term of civil authority 
and military commai.d, and the collection of the reve- 
nues to an immense amount, the same being at least 
eight hundred thousand pounds sterling yearly, was 
so totally inadequate to the interest granted, that it 
may justly be presumed it was not on that, or on any 
public ground or condition, that the said Hastings did 
delegate, out of all reach of resumption or correction, 
a lease of boundless power and enormous profit, for 
so long a term, to a known oppressor of the country. 

LXXVI. That Warren Hastings, being at Lucknow 
in consequence of his deputation aforesaid, did, in his 
letter from that city, dated 30th of April, 1784, recom- 





mond to the Court of Directors, "as his last and 
ultimate hope, that their wisdom would put a final 
period to (he ruinous and disreputable system of inter- 
ference, whether avowed or secret, in the affairs of tho 
Nabob of Oude, and withdraw forever the influence by 
which it is maintained," and that they ough.t to confine 
their views to tlie sole maintenance of tho old brigade 
stationed in Oude by virtue of the first treaty with 
the reigning Nabob, expressing himself in the follow- 
ing words to the Court of Directors. " If you trans- 
gress tliat line, you may extend the distribution of pat- 
ronage, and add to the fortunes of individuaU, and to 
the nominal riches of Great Britain ; but your otm 
interests will suffer by it ; and the ruin of a great and 
once flourishing nation will he recorded as the work of 
your administration, with an everlasting reproach to the 
British name. To this reasoning I shall join the 
obligations of justice and good faith, which cut off every 
pretext for your exercising any power or authority in 
this country, as long as the sovereign of it fulfils the 
engagements he has articled with you." 

LXXVII. That it appears by the extraordinary 
recommendation aforesaid, assorted by him, tlie said 
Hastings, to be enforced by the ^^ obligation of Justice 
and good faith," that the said Warren Hastings, at the 
time of writing the said letter, had made an agreement 
to withdraw the British interference, represented by 
him as a " ruinous and disreputable system," out of 
the dominions of the Nabob of Oude. But the in- 
strument itself, in whicli the said agreement is made, 
(if at all existing,) does not appear; nor hath the 
said Hastings transmitted any documents relative to 
the aaid treaty, which is a neglect highly criminal, — 



^ { 


especially as he has itiformed the Company, in his let- 
ter from Benares, " tliat he has promised the Nabob 
that he will not abandon him to the chance of any 
other mode of relation, and most confidently given 
him assurance of the ratification and confirmation of 
that which he [the said Hastings] had established 
between his government and the Company ": tho said 
confident assurance being given to an agreement nev- 
er produced, and made without any sort of authority 
from the Court of Directors, — an agreement preclud- 
ing, on the one hand, the operation of the discretion 
of his masters in the conduct of their affairs, or, on 
the other, subjecting them to the ha'^ard of an impu- 
tation on their faith, by breaking an engagement con- 
fidently made in their name, though without their con- 
sent, by the first officer of their government. 

That the said Hastings, further to preclude the op- 
eration of such discretionary conduct in the admin- 
istration of this kingdom as circumstances might call 
for, has informed the Directors that he has gone so far 
as even to condition the existence of the revenue itself 
with the exclusion of the Company, his masters, from 
all interference whatsoever: for in his letter to Mr. 
Wheler, dated Benares, 20th September, 1784, are 
the following words. "The aumils [collectors] de- 
manded that a clause should be inserted in their en- 
gagements, that they were to be in full force for the 
complete term of their leases, provided that no foreign 
authority was exercised over them, — or, in other 
words, that their engagements were to cease tvhenever they 
should he interrupted in their functions by the interference 
of an English agent. This requisition was officially no- 
tified to me by the acting minister, and referred to me 
in form by tlio Nabob Vizier, for luy previous consent 




to it. I encouraged it, and I gave my consent to it." 
And the said Hastings has been guilty of the high 
presumption to inform his said mastoi-s, that he lias 
taken that course to compel them not to violate the 
assurances given by him in their name : " There is 
one condition" (namely, the above condition) " which 
essentialli/ connects the confirmation of the settlement 
itself with the interests of the Company." 

LXXVIII. That the said Warren Hastings, who 
did show an indecent distrust of the Company's faith, 
did endeavor, before that time, at other times, namely, 
in his instructions to his secret agent, Major Palmer, 
dated the 6th of May, 1782, to limit the confidence to 
be reposed in the British government to the duration 
of his own power, in the following words in the fifth 
article. " It is very much my desire to impress the 
Nabob with a thorough confidence in the faith and 
justice of our government, — that is to say, in my own, 
while I am at the head of it : I cannot be answerable 
for the acts of others independent of me." 

LXXIX. That the said Warren Hastings did, in 
his letter, dated Benares, the 1st of October, 1784, to 
the Court of Directors, write, " that, if they [the 
Directors] manifested no symptoms of an ( 1.) intended 
interference, the objects of his engagements will be 
obtained ; ( 2.) but if a different policy shall be adopt- 
ed, — if new agents are sent into the country, and 
armed with authority for the purposes of vengeance 
or corruption {for to no other tcill they be- applied'), — 
(3.) if new demands are made on the Nabob Vizier, 
(4.) and accounts overcharged on one side, with a 
wide latitude taken on the other, to swell his debt 

















beyond the means of payment,— (5.) if political dan- 
gers are portended, to ground on them the plea of bur- 
dening his country with unnecessary defences and enor- 
mous subsidies, — ( 6.) or if, even abstaining from 
direct encroachment on the Nabob's rights, your govern- 
ment shall show but a degree of personal kindness to 
the partisans of the late usurpation, or by any construc- 
tive indication of partiality and dissatisfaction /umM 
grounds for the expectation of an approaching chango 
of system, — I am sorry to say, that all my labors will 
prove abortive." 

LXXX. That all the measures deprecated in fu- 
ture by the said Warren Hastings, with a reference to 
former conduct, in his several letters aforesaid, being 
(so far as the same are intelligible) six in number, 
have been all of them the proper acts and measures 
of the said Warren Hastings himself. For he did 
himself first of all introduce, and did afterwards con- 
tinue and support, that interference which ho now in- 
forms the Court of Directors " is ruinous and disrep- 
utable, and which the very symptoms of an intention 
to renew " he considers in the highest degree danger- 
ous ; he dill diri'ct, with a controlling and absolute 
authority, in every department of government, and 
in every district in the dominions of the Nabob of 
Oude. Secondly, the appointment of agents, which 
was eminently the act of his own administration : ho 
not only retaining many agents in the country of 
Oude, both ^'■secret and avowed" but also sending 
some of them, in defiance to the orders of that very 
Court of Directors, to whom, in his said letter of the 
1st of October, 1784, he assigns " vengeance and cor- 
ruption " as the only motives that can produce such 





• L 



appointments. Thirdly, that he, the said Warren 
Hastings, did instruct otio of the said agents, and did 
charge him upon pain of " a dreacfful responsiUlity" 
to perform sundry acts of violence against persons 
of the highest distinction and nearest relation to the 
prince ; which acts were justly liable to the imputation 
of " vengeance " in the execution, and which he, in his 
reply to the defence of Middleton to one of his charges, 
did declare to be liable to the suspicion of " corruption 
in the relaxation." Fourthly, that he did raise new 
demands on the Vizier, " and overcharge accounts on 
one side and take a wide latitude on the other," by 
sending up a new and before unheard-of overcharge 
of four hundred thousand pounds and upwards, not 
made by the Resident or admitted by the Vizier, and, 
by adding the same, did swell his debt " beyond the 
xneans of payment " ; and did even insert, as the ninth 
article of his charge against Middleton, " his omitting 
to take any notice of the additional balance of Rupees 
26,48,571, stated by the Accountant-General to be due 
from the Vizier on the 30th of April, 1780," to which 
he did add fourteen lac more, making together the 
above bum. Fifthly, that he, the said Warren Hast- 
ings, did assign " political dangers," in his minute of 
the 13th December, 1779, for burdening the said Na- 
bob of Oude " with unnecessary defences and enor- 
mous subsidies," with regard to which he then de- 
clared, that "it was our part, not his [the Nabob's], 
to judge and to determine." And, sixthly, tliat he 
did not only sliow the design, but t\\Qfact, of personal 
kindness to the partisans of what he hero calls, as well 
as in another letter, and in one Minute of Consulta- 
tion, a "late usurpation," — he having rewarded the 
principal and most obnoxious of tlie instruments of 

ti' il 





the said lato usurpation, (if such it was,) Richard 
Johnson, Esquire, with an honorable and profitable 
embassy to the court of the Nizam. 

LXXXI. That the said Warren Hastings, there- 
fore, — by assuming an authority which he himself 
did consider as an imirpation, and by acts in virtue 
of that usurped authority, done in his own proper 
person and by agents appointed by himself, and pro- 
ceeding (though with some mitigation, for which one 
of them was by him censured and accused) under his 
own express and positive orders and instructions, and 
thereby establishing, as he Limself observed, " a sys- 
tem of interference, disreputable and ruinous, which 
could only be subservient to promote patrouago, pri- 
vate interest, private embezzlement, corruption, and 
vengeance," to the public detriment of the Company, 
" and to the ruin of a once flourishing nation, and 
eternally reproachful to the British name," and for 
the evil effects of which system, " as his sole and ul- 
timate hope " and remedy, he recommends an entire 
abdication, forever, not only of all power and author- 
ity, but even of the interference and influence of 
Great Britain, — is guilty of an high crime and misde- 

LXXXII. That the said Warren Hastings, in his 
kncr from Chimar of the 29th of November, 1781, 
has represented that very influence and interference, 
which in throe public papers he denominates " a late 
umrp(aion,'" as being authorized by a rc<rular treaty 
and agreement, voluntarily made with the Nabob him- 
self, at a place culled Chunar, on the 19th of Sep- 
tember, 1781, a copy of which hath been transmitted 



to the Court of Directors, — and that throe • ersons 
were present at the execution of the same, two where- 
of were Middleton and Johnson, his agents and Resi- 
dents at Oude, the third the minister of the Nabob. 
And he did, in his paper written to the Council-Gener- 
al, and transmitted to the Court of Directors, not on- 
ly declare tiiat the said interference was agreed to by 
the said Nabob, and sealed with his seal, but would 
bo highly beneficial to him : assuring the said Council, 
" that, if the Resident performed his duty in the ex- 
ecution of his [the said Hastings's] instructions, the 
Nabob's part of the engagement will prove of still 
greater benefit to liim than to our government, in 
whose belialf it was exacted ; and that the participa- 
tion, which is allowed our Resident in the inspection 
of the public treats ure will secure the receipt of the 
Company's demands, whilst the influence which our 
government will ALWAYS possess over the public min- 
ister of the Xaboh, and the authority of our own, will be 
an effectual means of securing an attentive and faith- 
ful discharge of their several trusts, both towards the 
Company and the Vizier." 


LXXXIII. And the said Warren Hastings did not 
only settle a plan, of which the agency and interfer- 
ence aforesaid was a part, and assert the beneficial 
consequences thereof, but did also record, that the 
same " was a great public measure, constituted on a 
large and established system, and destructive, in its 
instant effects, of the interest and fortune of many 
patronized individuals " ; and in consequence of the 
said treaty, he, the said Warren Hastings, did author- 
ize and positively require his agent aforesaid to inter- 
fere in and control and regulate all the Xuloh'a affairs 

i il 




^^ 1653 EosI Moin StrMi 

B'.S Rochiitar, Ne» York 14609 USA 

^S (716) 482 - 0300 - Ption* 

^S (716) 288- 59S9 -Fax 



whatsoever: and the said "Warren Ilastings having 
made for the Company, and in its name, an acquisi< 
tion of power and authority, even if it had been abused 
by others, he ought to have remedied the abuse, and 
brought the guilty to condign punishment, instead of 
making another treaty without their approbation, con- 
sent, or knowledge, and to this time not communicat- 
ed to them, by which it appears he has annulled the 
former treaty, and the authority thereby acquired to 
the Company, as a grievance and usurpation, to which, 
from the general corruption of their service, no other 
remedy could be applied than a formal reniinciatiou 
of their power and influence : for which said actings 
and doings the said Warren Hastings is guilty of an 
high crime and misdemeanor. 


LXXXIV. That the Company's army in India is 
an object requiring the most vigilant and constant 
inspection, both to the happiness of tlie natives, the se 
curity of the British power, and to its own obedience 
and discipline, and does require that inspection in 
proportion as it is removed from the principal seat 
of government; and the number and discipline of 
the troops kept up by the native princes, along with 
British troops, is also of great moment and impor- 
tance to the same ends. That Warren Hastings, 
Esquire, pretending to pursue the same, did, in vir- 
tue of an authority acquired by the treaty of Chunar 
aforesaid, give strict orders, and to which he did 
demand a most implicit obedience, that all officers of 
the Nabob's army should be appointed " with the con- 
currence of the JResident," and supposing the case that 
persons of obnoxious description or of known disaffec- 
tion to the British government should be appointed, 




(of whicli lie left the Resident to be the judge,) he did 
direct in the following words : " You are in such case 
to remonstrate against it ; and if the Vizier should 
persist in his choice, you are peremptorily, and in my 
name, to oppose it as a breach of his agreement " ; and 
he did also direct that the " mootiana [or soldiers 
employed for the collection of revenue] should bo 
reformed, and reduced into one corps for the whole 
service, and that no infantry should be left in the Na- 
bob's service but what may be necessary for his body- 
guard " ; and he did further order and direct a-? fol- 
lows : " That in quelling disturbances the commander 
of the forces should assist you [the said Resident] on 
the requisition of the Vizier communicated through 
you to him [the said commander] , or at your own 
single application. It is directed that the regiment 
ordered for the immediate protection of your office 
and person at Lucknow shall be relieved every three 
months, and during its stay there shall act solely and 
exclusively under your orders." And it appears in 
the course of the Company's correspondence, that 
the country troops under the Nabob's sole direction 
would be ill-disciplined and unserviceable, if not 
worse, and therefore the said Warren Hastings did 
order that " no infantry should be kept in his ser- 
vice " ; yet it appears that the said Warren Hastings 
did make an arrangement for a body of native tioops 
wholly out of the control or inspection of the British 
government, and left a written order in the hands of 
Major Palmer (one of his agents, who had been con- 
tinued there, though the Company was not permitted 
to employ any) to be transmitted to Colonel Cum- 
ming as soon as an adequate force shall be provided 
for the defence of the NahoVs frontier by detachments 





from the NahoVt own battalions, — the said Colonel 
Cumming's forces, whom the others were to supersede 
and replace, consisting wholly of infantry, and which, 
being intended for the same service, were probably 
of the same constitution. 


LXXXV. That the old brigade of British troops, 
which by treaty was to remain, had been directed, by 
the instructions of the said Hastings to the Resident 
Middleton and to the Resident Bristow, " not to be 
employed at the requisition of the Vizier any other- 
wise than through the Resident"; and the said direc- 
tion was properly given, — it not being fit that British 
trooj s should be under the sole direction of foreign 
independent princes, or of any other than the Brit- 
ish government : yet, notwithstanding the proper and 
necessary direction aforesaid, he, the said Warren 
Hastings, hath left the said troops, by his new treaty, 
without any local control, or even inspection, notwith- 
standing his powers under the treaty of Chunar, and 
his own repeated orders, and notwithstanding the mis- 
chiefs and dangers which the said Warren Hastings 
did foresee would result therefrom, if left under the 
sole direction of the Nabob, and their own discretion, 
the said Hastings having stipulated with the said Nabob 
not to exercise any autliority, or even influence, secret 
or avowed, within his dominions. 

LXXXVI. That the crime of the said Warreu 
Hastings, in attempting thus to abandon the British 
army to the sole discretion of the Nabob of Oude, is 
exceedingly aggravated by tlie description given by 
him severally of the said Nabob of Oude, and of the 
British army stationed for the defence of his dominions. 



ia his letters to the Court of Directors, and in his 
Minutes of Consultation, and particularly in his letter 

of , immediately on the accession of the Nabob, 

he did inform the said Court, " that the Nabob had 
not, by all accounts, the qualities of the head or heart 
which fitted him for that office, though there was no 
dispute concerning his right to succeed " ; and some 
years afterwards, when his accounts must have been 
rendered more certain, he did, in his Minute of Con- 
sultation of the 15th of December, 1779, (regularly 
transmitted to the Court of Directors,) upon a discus- 
sion for withdrawing certain troops kept up in the Na- 
bob's country without his consent, by him, the said 
Warren Hastings, strongly urge as follows, — " the ne- 
cessity of maintaining the influence and force which 
we possess in the country ; that the disorders of his 
state [the Nabob of Oude's state] and dissipation of 
his revenues are the effects of his own conduct, which 
has failed, not so much from the usual effects of inca- 
pacity as from the detestable choice he has made of 
the ministers of his power and the participation of his 
confidence, I forbear to expatiate furtlier on his char- 
;tcter ; it is sufftcicnt that I am understood by the mem- 
bers of this board, who must know the truth of my al- 
lusions. Mr. Francis " (a member of the board) " sure- 
ly was not aware of the injury he did me [ Warren 
Hastings] by attributing to tlie spirit of ;jarty tlic char- 
acter I gave Asoph ul Dowlah [the Nabob of Oude] ; 
he himself knows it to be true; and it is one of those 
notorieties u'hich supersede the necessity of any evidence. 
I was forced to the allusion I made by the imputation 
cast on this government, as having caused the evils which 
prevail in the government of the Nabob of Oude, which 
I could only answer by ascribing them to their true 



I *',t. 

- f 1 




i i 


cause, the character and conduct of the Nabob of Oude.^' 
Aud the Resident (appointed by the said Hastings, 
against the orders of the Court of Directors, as his 
particular confidential representative, one whom the 
said Nabob did himself request might be conti ued 
with him bi/ an engagement in writing forever^ did some 
time before, that is, on the 3d of January, 1779, as- 
sure the said Hastings and the Council-General, that 
" such is his Excellency's [the Nabob of Oude's] dis- 
position, and so entirely has he lost the confidence and 
affections of his subjects, that, unless some restraint 
is imposed on him which would effectually secure 
those who live under the protection of his government 
from violence and oppression, I am but too well con- 
vinced that no man of reputation or property will 
long continue in these provinces " ; and that t)\e said 
Resident proceeds to an instance of oppression and 
rapine, " out of man^ of the Nabob's, which has caused 
a total disaffection and want of confidence among his 
subjects : he hoped the boaid would take it into their 
humane consideration, and interpose their influence, 
and prevent an act which would inevitably bring dis- 
grace upon himself, and a proportionable degree of dis- 
credit on the 1 itional character of the English, which 
I consider to be more cr less concerned in every act 
of his administi'ation." 

LXXXVn. That no exception was ever taken by 
the said Warren Hastings to the truth of the facts, 
or to the justness of the observation of the said Resi- 
dent, which he did transmit to the Court of Directors. 
And the said Warren Hastings, in his letter from 
Chunar, dated the 29th of November, 1781, speaking 
of the restraints which had been put by him, the said 



Hastings, on the Naliob, relative to liis own mootiana^ 
or forces for collection and police, and the necessity 
of giving the Resident a control in the nomination of 
the officers of his army, has asserted, " that the neces- 
sity of the reservation arose from a too well known 
defect in the Nabob's character : if this check be with- 
drawn, and the choice left absolutely to the Nabob, 
the first commands in his army will be filled with the 
most worthless and abandoned of his subjects: his 
late commander-in-chief is a signal and scandalous iu- 
titauce of this." 

LXXXVIII. And the said Warren Hastings, in 
his letter to the Court of Directors, dated Benares, 
the loth of October, 1784, even after he had ma-^o 
the aforesaid renunciation of tlie Company's author- 
ity and influence to the Nabob, did write, " that the 
Nabob, though most gentle in his manners, and en- 
dued with an understanding much above tlie com- 
mon level, has been unfo" innately bred up in habits 
that draw his attention too much from his own alfairs, 
and often subject him to the guidance of insidious and 
unworthy confidants"; which, though more decently 
expressed with regard to the Nabob than in his former 
minutes, substantially agrees with them. And the 
said Warren Hastings did inform tlie Court of Direc- 
tors, after he had solemnly covenanted to witlidraw 
all the Company's influence on the assuram-.;^ and 
promises of a person so by himself described, that, for 
reu>ons grounded on his Itnowledge of the imbecility 
of the character of the Nabob, he waited in a frontier 
town, " that he might be at hand to counteract any 
attempt to defeat the effect of his proceedings at Luck- 
now": and in his Icttei to Mr. Wht^lcr uom the 








Bame place he did write in the following words : •* I 
am still near enough to attend to the first efiects of 
the execution, and to interfere with my influence for 
the removal of any obstructions to which they are or 
may be liable." He therefore found that there was 
none or but an insufficient security to the eflFect of his 
treaty, but in his own direct personal violation of it. 
What otherwise was wanting in the security for the 
Nabob's engagements was to be supplied as follows : 
" The most respectable persons of his f9»nily will be 
employed to counteract every other which may tend 
to warp him from it ; and I am sorry to say that such 
asiistance wa» wanting." And in another letter, 
" that he had equal ground to expect every degree of 
support which could be given it by the first characters 
of his family, who are warmly and zealously interest- 
ed in it " : tb°i principal male character of the family, 
and of the most influence in that family, being Salar 
Jung, uncle to the Nabob ; and the first female char- 
acters of the family being the mother and grandmoth- 
er of the reigning sovereign : all of whom, male and 
female, he, the said Warren Hastings, in sundry let- 
ters of his own, in the transmission of various ofiicial 
documents, and even in affidavits studiously collected 
and swori before Sir Elijah Impoy during his short 
residence at Liicknow and Benares, did himself rep- 
resent as persoi s entirely disaffected to the English 
power in India, — as having been principal promoters, 
if not original contrivers, of a general rebellion and 
revolt for the utter extirpation of the English na- 
tion, — and as such, he, the said Warren Hastings, 
did compel the Nabob reluctantly to take from them 
their landed estates ; and yet the said Warren Hast- 
ings has had the presumption to attempt to impose 



on the East India Company by pretending to place 
his reliance on those three persons for a settlement 
favorable to the Company's interests, on his renuncia- 
tion of all their own power, authority, and influence, 
and on his leaving their army to the sole and uncon- 
trolled discretion of a stranger, meriting in his opin- 
ion the description given by him as aforesaid, as well 
as by him frequently asserted to be politically incapa- 
ble of supporting his own power without the aid of the 
forces of the Company. And the offence of the said 
Warren Hastings, in '^'lanr'oning a considerable part 

. mer aforesaid, is much 

. which he has himself 

. army, and particularly 

,. »..v,a is st" jned in the Nabob 

for he did himself, on the 29th 

of the British army 
increased by the «' 
given of the state ( 
of that part thereof 
of Oude's dominions : 

of November, 1781, transmit the information follow- 
ing, on that subject, to the Court of Directors, name- 
ly, — " that the remote stations of those troops, plac- 
ing the commanding officers beyond the notice and 
control of the board [the Council-General] at Calcut- 
ta, afforded too much of opportunity and temptation 
for unwarrantable emoluments, and excited the contagion 
of peculation and rapacity throughout the whole army. 
A most remarkable instance and uncontrovertible 
proof of the prevalence of this spirit has been seen 
in the court-martial upon Captain Erskine, where the 
court, composed of officers of rank, and respectable 
characters, unanimously and honorably, (most hon- 
orably,) upon an acknowledged fact, acquitted him, 
which in times of stricter discipline would have 
been deemed a crime deserving the severest pun- 
ishment." From which representation (if the said 
Warren Hastings did not falsely "nd unjustly accuse 

i y 




\: ,, 






and slander the Company's service) it appeared that 
the peculation whicli infected the whole i.. niy, derived 
from the taint which it had in Oude, and so fatal to 
the discipline of the troops, would be dangerously in- 
creased by his treaty and agreement aforesaid with 
the Nabob, and by his own said evil counsel to the 
Court of Directors. 

i; ! 

LXXXIX. That it appears, after the said Warren 
Hastings had, on grounds so disgraceful to the British 
nation and government, agreed to remove forever the 
British influence and interference from the govern- 
ment of Oude, on account of the disorders in the said 
government, solely produced by his own criminal acts 
and criminal connivances, that he did overturn his 
own settlement as soon as he had made it, and did, 
after he had abolished the Company's Residency, as a 
grievance, wholly violate his own solemn agreement : 
for he did, for his private purposes, continue tlierein 
his own private agent. Major Palmer, with a number 
of officers and pensioners, at a charge to the revenues 
of the country greatly exceeding that of the establish- 
ment under Mr. Bristow, which he did represent as 
frightfully enormous, and which he jnetended to re- 
move : the former amounting to 112,950?., the latter 
only to 64,202Z. 

XC. That his own secret agent. Major Palmer, did 
receive a salary or allowance, equal to 22,800?. a 
year, out of the distressed province of Oude ; and 
tliis tlie said Palmer did declare not to be more than 
he absolutely did really and bond fide spend, and that 
he had retrenched considerably " in some of the 
articles since the expense has been borne by the Viz- 



ier, and iu every particular ho raailo as little parade 
and appeanmo; us his station would admit," — his sta- 
tion being that of the said Warroa Hastings's private 
agent. But if the said large salary must be consid- 
ered .as merely equal to the expenses, large secret 
emoluments must be presumed to attend it, in order 
to make it a place advantageous to the holder thereof. 
Tliat the said Palmer did apply to the board at Cal- 
cutta for a new authority to continue tne said establish- 
ments, — ho conceiving their continuance, " after the 
jK "od of the Governor- ral's departure, depend- 
ed ii >on the pleasure of tiio board, and not upon the 
author iti/ of the Governor- General, under the sanction 
of uhich they were established or confirmed. 

XCI. That the said Warren Hastings, iu order to 
ruin the Resident Bristow, and to justify himself for 
his former proceedings respecting him, did bring be- 
fore the board a new charge against him, for having 
paid a large establishment of offices and pensions to 
tlie Company's servants from tho revenv s of Oude ; 
and the said Bristow, in making his defence against 
the charge aforesaid, did plead, that he had foui 1 all 
the allowances on his list established before his last 
appointment to the Residency, — that they had grown 
to that excess in the interval between his first re- 
moval by the said Warren Hastings and his reap- 
pointment ; and having adduced many reasons to 
make it highly probable that the said Hastings was 
perfectly well acquainted with it, and did approve of 
the expensive establishments which he, the said Bris- 
tow, simply had paid, but not imposed, he did allege, 
besides tho official assurances of his predecessor, Mid- 
dleton, certain facts, as amounting to a direct proof 









that the Govcrii'^''-Gcnernl, Warrcii Uastiiigs, was not 
averse to the Yh *8 granting largo sahiries to more 
than one Euro|>cau gentleman. And tlic first in> 
stance was to Mr. Thomas, a surgeon, who, exclusive 
of his pay from the Company, wliich was 1,4 tOi. a 
year, claimed from the Vizier, with Mr. Hastings's 
knowledge, the sum of 9,763?. a year, and upwards, 
nuking together 11,20C^ per annum. Tlie next was 
Mr. Trevor Wheler, who did receive, upon the same 
cstalilishmcnt, when he was Fourth Assistant at Oude, 
*),000^ a year ; and which last fact the said Hastings 
has admitted upon record " th&i, the accusations of 
Mr. Bristow and Mr. Cowper did oblige and compel 
liim to acknowledge," — denying, at the same time, 
tliat the rllowances of the Residents Middleton and 
Bristow, except in this single instance, were ever 
authorized by him ; whereas his own agent. Palmer, 
did, in his letter of the 27th of Marcl* /'S'), repre- 
sent, that the said salaries and alio vancca (if not more 
and larger) were by him authorized or confirmed. 

XCn. Tliat ihe aforesaid Bristow did also produce 
the following letter in proof that Mr. Hastings knew 
and approved of large salaries to British subjects up- 
on the revenues of Oude, and which he did declare 
that nothing but the ncces>ity of self-defence could 
liuvc induced him to produce. 

' Dear Bbistow, — 

"^fir Eyre Coote has some field-allowances to re- 
ceive from the Vizier ; they amount to Sicca Rupees 
l.j,554 per month, and he has been paid up by the 
Vizier to the 20th of August, 1782. The Governor 
has directed me to write to you, to request you to re- 


.S' A.ijv Coatt, K.B. 

l-n.tii i fjjiiiSiii; ai iht N'.»iioiu: l',)'-'rjit <ijI1it\ 





r.r , 







u, . 







ceiye what is due from the Vizier from the 20th Au- 
gust last, at the rate of Lucknow Sicca Rupees 15,554 
per month, and send me a bill for the amount, the 
receipt of which I will acknowledge in the capacity 
of Sir Eyre Coote's attorney; and the Governor de- 
sires that you will continue to receive Sir Eyre Coote's 
field-allowances at the same rate, and remit the mon- 
ey to me as it comes in. 

(Signed) "Charles Croptes. 

•• Calcdtta, January 25, 1783." 

XCIII. That Sir Eyre Coote aforesaid was at the 
time of the said field-allowances not serving in the 
country of Oude, on which the said allowances were 
charged, but in the Carnatic. 

XCIV. That, from the declaration of the said Hast- 
ings himself, that it was the conviction of Mr. Bristow 
and Mr. Cowper that could alone oblige and compel 
him to acknowledge certain of his aforesaid practices, 
and that nothing hid the necessity of self-defence could 
have induced Mr. Bristow to make public another and 
much stronger instance of the same, it is to be violent- 
ly presumed, that, where these two, or either, or both 
necessities did not exist, many evil and oppressive 
practices of the said Hastings do remain undiscov- 
ered, — that, if it had not been for the contests be- 
tween him, the said Hastings, and the Resident Bris- 
tow, not only the before-mentioned particulars, but 
the whole of the expensive civil establishments for 
English servants at Oude, would have been forever 
concealed from the Directors and from Parliament: 
and yt the said Hastings has had the audacity to pre- 
tend so complete an ignorance of the facts, that, repro- 






senting the Vizier as objecting to the largeness of the 
payments made by Bristow, and stating a very re- 
duced list, which he was willing to allow for, amount- 
ing to 80,0002. a year, the said Hastings did affect to 
be alarmed at the magnitude even of the list so cur- 
tailed, expressing himself as follows, in his minute 
of the 7th of December, 1784 : " For my own part, 
when the Vizier's minister first informed me that tho 
amount which his master had authorized, and was 
willing to admit, for the charges of the Residency, 
and the allowances of the gentlemen at Lucknow, was 
25,000 rupees per month, I own I was startled at 
the magnitude of the sum, and was some days hesi- 
tating in my mind whether I could with propriety ad- 
mit of it" : whereas he well knew that the three sums 
alone of which the necessities aforesaid had compelled 
the discovery did greatly exceed that sum of which at 
the first hearing he affects to have been so exceed- 
ingly alarmed and thrown into a state of hesitation 
which continued for some days, and although he, the 
said Hastings, was conscious that he had at the very 
time authorized an establishment to more than four 
times the amount thereof. 

XCV. That, in the said deceits, prevarications, 
contradictions, malicious accusations, fraudulent con- 
cealments, and compelled discoveries, as well as in the 
said secret, corrupt, and prodigal disposition of the 
revenues: of Oude, as well as in his breach of faith to 
tho Nabob, in continuing expensive establishments 
under a private agent of his own after he had agreed 
to remove the Company's agent, the said Warren 
Hastings is guilty of an high offence and misde- 




I. That it was the declared policy of the Compa- 
ny, on the acquisition of the dewanny of Bengal, to 
continue the country government, under the inspec- 
tion of the Resident at the Nabob's durbar in the first 
instance, and that of the President and Council in 
the last; and for that purpose they did stipulate to 
assign, for the support of the dignity of the Nabob, 
an annual allowance from the reveinues, equal to four 
hundred thousand pounds a year. 

II. That, during the couniry government, the prin- 
cipal active person in the administration of affairs, for 
rank, and for reputation of probity, and of knowledge 
in the revenues and the laws, was Mahomed Reza 
Kh§,n, who, besides large landed property, was pos- 
sessed of offices whose emoluments amounted nearly, 
if not altogether, to one hundred thousand pounds a 

IV,* That the Company's servants, in the begin- 
ning, were not conversant in the affairs of the reve- 
nue, and stood in need of natives of integrity and ex- 
perience to act in the management thereof. On that 
ground, as well as in regard to the rank which Ma- 
homed Reza Khan helvi m the couniry, and the con- 
fidence of the people in him, they, the President and 
Council, did inform the Court of Directors, in their 
letter of the 30th of September, 17CG, Lliat, " as Ma- 
homed Reza KhSn's short administration was irre- 
proachable, they determined to continue him in a 
share of the au aority " ; and this information was 
not given lightly, but was founded upon an inquiry 

• Sic orig. 












into his conduct, and a minute examination of charges 
made against him by his rivals in the Nabob's court, 

they having insinuated to the Nabob that a design 

was formed for deposing him, and placing Mahomed 
Reza on his throne ; but, on examination, the Presi- 
dent and Council declare, thar, "he had so openly 
and candidly accounted /or every rupee disbursed from 
the treasury, that they could not, without injury to 
his character, and injustice to his conduct during his 
short administration, refuse continuing him in a share 
of the government." 

V. That the Company had reason to be satisfied 
with the arrangement made, so far as it regarded 
him: the President and Council having informed 
them, in the following year, in their letter of the 9th 
of December, 1766, that " the large "ncrease of the 
revenue must in a great measure be ascribed to Mr. 
Sykes's assiduity, and to Mahomed Reza KMn'a pro- 
found knowledge in the finances." 

VI. That the then President and Council, finding 
it necessary to make several reforms in the adminis- 
tration, were principally aided in the same by the 
suggestion, advice, and assistance of the said Ma- 
homed Reza Khan ; and in their letter to the Court 
of Directors of the 24th of June, 1767, they state 
their resolution of reducing the emoluments of office, 
which before had arisen from a variety of presents 
and other perquisities, to fixed allowances ; and they 
state the merits of Mahomed Reza KhSn therein, as 
well as the importance, dignity, and responsibility of 
his station, in the following manner. 

" Mahomed Reza Kh&n has now of himself, teith 




great delteaey of honor, represented to us the evil con- 
sequenc<><< that must ensue from the continuance of 
this practice, — since, hj suffering the principal offi- 
cers of the government to depend for the support of 
their dignity on the precarious fund of perquisites, 
they in a manner oblige them to pursue oppressive 
and corrupt measures, equally injurious to the coun- 
try and the Company ; and they accordingly assigned 
twelve lac of rupees for the maintenance and sup- 
port of the said Mahomed Reza Eh&n, and two other 
principal persons, who held in their hands the most 
important employments of that government, — having 
regard to their elevatnd stations, and to the expedi- 
ency of supporting them in all the show and parade 
requisite to keep up the authority and influence of 
their respective offices, as they are all men of weight 
and consideration in the country, who held places of 
great trust and profit under the former government. 
We further propose, by this act of generosity, to en- 
gage their cordial services, and confirm them steady 
in our interests; since they cannot hope, from the 
most successful ambition, to rise to greater advan- 
tages by any chance or revolution of affairs. At the 
same time it was reasonable we should not lose sight 
of Mahomed Reza Ehin's past services. He has pur- 
sued the Company's interest with steadiness and dili- 
gence ; his abilities qualify him to perform the most 
important services ; the unavoidable charges of his 
particula. situation are great ; in dignity he stands 
second to the Nabob only ; — and as he engages to 
increase the revenues, without injustice or oppres- 
sion, to more than the amount of his salary, and to 
relinquish those advantages, to the amount of eight lacs 
of rupees per annum, which he heretofore enjoyed, we 



' I 


f. : 

l! t 





|i ' 




thotiglit it proper, in the distribution of salaries, to 
consider Mahomed Reza Khfin in a light superior to 
the other ministers. We have only to observe fur- 
ther, that, great and enormous as the sum must ap- 
pear which we have allotted for the support of the 
ministers of the government, we will not hesitate to 
pronounce that it is necessary and reasonable, and 
will appear so on tli ; consideration of the power 
which men employed on these important services 
have either to obstruct or promote the public good, 
unless their integrity be confirmed by tiie ties of 
gratitude and interest." 

Vn. That the said Mahomed Reza Khftn contin- 
ued, with the same diligence, spirit, and fidelity, to 
execute the trust reposed in him, which compre- 
hended a large proportion of the weight of govern- 
ment, and particularly of the collections ; and his 
attachment to the interest of the Company, and his 
extensive knowledge, were again, in the course of 
the year 1767, fully acknowledged, and stated to the 
Court of Directors. And it further appears that 
by an incessant application to business his health 
was considerably impaired, which gave occasion in the 
year following, that is, in February, 1768, to a fresh 
acknowledgment of his services in these terms : " We 
must, in justice to Mahomed Reza Eh&n, express the 
high sense we entertain of his abilities, and of the in- 
defatigable attention he has shown in the execution 
of the important trust reposed in him ; and we cannot 
but lament the prospect of losing his services from 
the present declining state of his health.'' 

VIII. That as in the increase of the revenue the 



said Mahomed Reza Khfin was employed as a person 
likely to improve the same without detriment to the 
people, so, when the state of any province seemed to 
require a remission, he was employed as a person 
disposed to the relief of the people without fraud to 
the revenue; and this was expressed by the Presi- 
dent Jind Council as follows, with relation to the re- 
missions granted in the province of Bahar : " That 
the general knowledge of Mahomed Reza Khin, in 
all matters relative to the dewanny revenues, induced 
us to consent to such deductions being made from 
the general state of that province at the \&at poonah 
as may be leemed irrecoverable, or such as may pro- 
cure an immediate relief and encouragerient to the 
ryots in the future cultivation of their lands." 

IX. That the said Mahomed Reza Khfin, in the 
execution of the said great and important trusts and 
powers, was not so much as suspected of an ambitious 
or encroaching spirit, which might make him danger- 
ous to the Company's then recent authority, or which 
might render his precedence injurious to the consider- 
ation due to his colleagues in office ; but, on the con- 
trary, it appears, that, a plan having been adopted for 
dividii the administration, in order to remove the 
Nabob's jealousies, the same was in danger of being 
subverted by the ambition " of two of his colleagues, 
and the excessive moderation of Mahomed Reza Khdn." 
And for a remedy of the inconveniencies which might 
arise from the excess of an accommodating temper, 
though attended with irreproachable integrity, the 
President and Council did send one of their own mem- 
bers, as their deputy, to the Nabob of Bengal, at his 
capital of Moorshedabad ; and this measure appears to 








hare been adopted for the support of Mahomed Reza 
Elh&n, in consequence of an hiquirj made and advice 
given by Lord Glive, in hia letter of the 3d of July, 
1765, in which letter he expresses himself of the said 
Mahomed Reza Khkn as follows : " It is with pleasure 
I can acquaint you, that, tiie more I tee of Mahomed Be- 
M. Khdn, the ttronger it my conviction of hit honor and 
moderation, but that, at the same time, I cannot help 
observing, that, either from timidity or an erroneous 
principle, he is too ready to submit to encroachments 
upon that proportion of power that has been allotted 




X. That, the Nabob Jaffier Ali Eh^n dying in 
February, 1765, Mahomed Reza Eh&n was appomt- 
ed guardian to his children, and administrator of his 
office, or regent, which appointment the Court of 
Directors did approve. But the party opposite to 
Mahomed Reza Khan having continued to cabal 
against him, sundry accusations were framed relative 
to oppression at the time of the famine, and for a 
balance due during his employment of collector of 
the revenues; upon which the Directors did order 
him to be deprived of his office, f,nd a strict inquiry 
to be made into his conduct. 


XI. That the said Warren Hastings, then lately 
appointed to the Presidency, did, on the 1st of April, 
and on the 24th of September, 1772, write letters to 
the Court of Directors, informing taem that on the 
very next day after he had received (as he asserts) 
their private orders, "addressed to himself alone," 
and not to the board, he did dispatch, by express mes- 
sengers, his orders to Mr. Middleton, tae Resident at 



the Nabob's court at Moorshedabad, in a public char- 
acter and trust with the Nabob, to arrest, in his capi- 
tal, and at his court, and without any previous notice 
given of any charge, his principal minister, the afore- 
said Mahomed Reza Eh&n, and to bring him down to 
Calcutta ; and he did carefully conceal his said pro- 
ceedings from the knowledge of the board, on pretext 
of his not being acquainted with their dispositions, 
and the influence which he thought that the said Mar 
homed Reza Khttn had amongst them. 

XII. That the said Warren Hastings, at the time 
he gave his orders as aforesaid for arresting the said 
Mahomed Reza Khan, did not take any measures to 
compel the appoarauce of any other persons as wit- 
nesses, — declaring it as his opinion, " that there 
would be little need of violence to obtain such intelli- 
gence as they could give against their former master, 
when his authority is taken from him " ; but he did 
afterwards, in excuse for the long detention and im- 
prisonment of the said Mahomed Reza Khan, without 
any proofs having been obtained of his guilt, or meas- 
ures taken to bring him to a trial, assure the Directors, 
in direct contradiction to his former declaration, " that 
the influence of Mahomed Reza Khfin still prevailed 
generally throughout the country, in the Nabob's 
household, and at the capital, and was scarcely affect- 
ed by his present disgrace,"— notwithstanding, as he, 
the said Hastings, doth confess, he had used his u^ 
most endeavors " to break that influence, by remov- 
ing his dependants, and putting the direction of all 
the affairs that had been committed to his care into 
the hands of the moat powerful or active of kin enemies ; 
that he depended on the activity of their hatred to 












I ' 




Mahomed Reza Khftn, incited by the expectation of 
rewards, for luTestiguting the conduct of the latter ; 
ihat with this the institution of the new dewanny 
coincided ; and that the samr principle had guided 
him in the choice of Munnj Begum and Rtyah 
Gk>urda8, — the former for the chief administration, 
the latter " (the son of Nundcomar, and a mere in* 
Btrument in the V auds of his father) '* for the dew- 
arny of the Nabob's household, — both tTf declared 
fnemies of Muliomed Reza Khftn." 



XIII. That, although it might be true that eno* 
mies will become the most active prosecutors, and as 
such may, though under much guard and many pre- 
cautions, be used even as witnesses, and that it ought 
not to be an exception, supposing their character and 
capacity otherwise good, to the appointing them to 
power, yet to advance persons to power on the ground 
not of their honor and integrity, which might have 
produced the enmity of bad men, but merely for the 
enmity itself, without any reference whatsoever to a 
laudable caiise. and even with a declared ill opinion 
of the morals of one of the party, such as was actually 
delivered in the said letter by him, the said Hastings, 
of Nundcomar, (and which time has shown he might 
also on good ground have conceived of others,) was, 
in the circumstances of a criminal inquiry, a motive 
highly disgraceful to the honor o. government, and 
destructive of impartial justice, by holding out the 
greatest of all possible temptation to false accusation, 
to corrupt and factious conspiracies, to perjury, and 
to every spec'es of injustice and oppression. 

XIV. That, in consequence of the aforesaid mo- 


V; ■■ 



tires, and others pretended, which were by no means 
a sufficient justification to the said Warren Hastings, 
he did appoint the woman aforesaid, called Munny 
B( glim, who had been of the lowest and most discred- 
itable o-^^r in society, according to the ideas preva- 
lent in India, but from whom he received several 
eums of money, to be guardian to the Nabob in pref- 
erence to his own mother, and to adminUter the affairt 
of the government in the place of the said Mahomed 
Reza Khfiu, the second Mussulman in rank after the 
Nabob, and tlie first in knowledge, gravity, weight, 
and character among the Mussulmen of that province. 
And in order to try every method and to take every 
chance for his destruction, the said Warren Hastings 
did maliciously and oppressively keep him under con- 
finement, for a part of the time without any inquiry, 
and pfterwards with a slow and dilatory trial, for tw* 
years together. 

XV. That, notwithstanding a total revolution in 
the power, in part avowedly made for his destruc- 
tion, the persons appointed for his trial did, on full 
inquiry, completely acquit the said Mahomed Reza 
Kh&n of the criminal charges against him, on account 
of which he had been so long persecuted and con- 
fined, and suffered much in mind, body, and fortune: 
and the Court of Directors, in their letter of the 3d 
of March, 1775, testify their satisfaction in tlie con- 
duct and result of the said inquiry, and did direct 
the restoration of the said Maliomed Reza KhSn to 
liberty, and to the offices wliich he had lately held, 
which comprehended the management of the Nabob's 
household, and the general superintendency of the 
justice of Bengal ; but, accordii> i to the orders of 








'«• - if 



the Court of Directors, his appointments were re- 
duced to thirty thousand pounds a year, or therea- 
bouts, of which he did make grievous complaint, on 
account of the expenses attendant on his station, 
and the heavy debts which he had been obliged to 
contract during his unjust persecution and impris- 
onment aforesaid. 


XVI. That, on the removal of the said Mahomed 
Reza Ehan from the superintendency of the criminal 
justice, and in consequence of letting the province 
of Bengal in farm by the said Warren Hastings, sev- 
eral dangerous and mischievous innovations were 
made by him, the said Warren Hastings, and the 
criminal justice of the country was almost wholly 
subverted, and great irregularities and disorders did 
actually ensue. 

XVII. That the Council-General, established by act 
of Parliament in the year 1773, did restore the said 
Mahomed Reza Khan, with the consent and approba- 
tion of tho Nabob, ( but under a protest from the said 
Warren Hastings,) to his liberty and to his offices, ac- 
cording to the spirit of the orders given by the Court 
of Directors as aforesaid ; and the Court of Directors 
did approve of the said appointment, and did assure 
the said Mahomed Reza Khan of their favor and pro- 
tection as long as his conduct should merit the same, 
in the following terms. "As the abilities of Mahomed 
Reza Khan have been sufficiently manifested, as offi- 
cial experience qual''' • him for so high a station in 
a more eminent degue than any other native with 
whom the Company has been connected, and as no 
proofs of maladministration have been established 

,.\l.K J 




against him, either during the strict investigation of 
his conduct or since his retirement, we cannot under 
all circumstances but approve your recommendation 
of him to the Nabob to constitute him his Naib. We 
are well pleased that he has received that appoint- 
ment, and authorize you to assure him of our favor, 
so long as a firm attachment to the interest of the 
Company and a proper discharge of the duties of his 
station shall render him worthy of our protection." 
And the said Mahomed Reza KhS,n did continue to 
execute the same without any complaint whatsoever 
of malversation or negligence, in any manner or de- 
gree, in his said office. 

XVIII. That in March, 1778, the said Warren 
Hastings, under color that the Nabob had completed 
his twentieth year, and had desired to be placed in 
the entire and uncontrolled management of his own 
affairs, and that Mahomed Reza Khan should be re- 
moved from his office, and that Munny Begum, his 
step-mother, the dancing-girl aforesaid, " should take 
on herself the management of the nizamut [the gov- 
ernment and general superintendoncy of criminal jus- 
tice] without the interference of any person what- 
soever," and notwithstanding the contradictions in 
the pretended applications from the Nabob, with 
whose incapacity for all affairs he was well ac- 
quainted, did, in defiance of the orders of the Court 
of Directors, and without regard to the infamy of an 
arrangement made for the evident and declared pur- 
pose of delivering not only the family with the prince, 
but the government and justice of a great kingdom, 
into such insufficient, corrupt, and scandalous hands, 
and though he has declared his opinion " that our na- 


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tional character is concerned in the character which 
the Nabob may obtain in the public opinion," on ob- 
taining a majority in Council, without any complaint, 
real or pretended, remove the said Mahomed Reza 
from all his offices, and did partition his salary as a 
spoil in the following manner: to Munny Begum, 
the dancing-girl aforesaid, an additional allowance 
of 72,000 rupees ( 7,200^.) a year ; to the Nabob's 
own mother but half that sum, that is to say, 36,000 
rupees (3,600Z.) a year; to Rajah Qourdas, son of 
Nundcomar, (whom he had described as a weak 
young man,) 72,000 rupees ( 7,200Z.) a year, as con- 
troUer of the household ; and to a magistrate called 
Sudder ul Hock, who, in real subserviency to the said 
Munny Begum, was nominally to act in the depart- 
ment of criminal justice, 78,000 rupees ( 7,800Z.) a 
year: the total of which allowances exceeding the 
salary of Mahomed Reza Khan by 18,000 rupees 
(1,800Z.) yearly, he did, for the corrupt and scan- 
dalous purposes aforesaid, order the same to be made 
up from the Company's treasury. 

XIX. That Mr. Francis and Mr. Wheler having 
moved that the execution of the aforesaid arrange- 
ment, the whole expense of which, ordinary and ex- 
traordinary, was charged upon the Company's treasu- 
ry, and therefore could not be even colorably disposed 
of at the pretended will of the said Nabob, might be 
suspended until the pleasure of the Court of Direc- 
tors thereon should be known, and the same being re- 
solved agreeably to law by a majority of the Council 
then present, the said Hastings, urging on violently 
the immediate execution of his corrupt project, and 
having obtained, by the return of Richard Barwell, 



Esquire, a majority in Council in his own casting 
vote, did rescind the aforesaid resolution, and did 
carry into immediate execution the aforesaid most 
unwarrantable, mischievous, and scandalous design. 

XX. That the consequences which might be ex- 
pected from such a plan of administration did almost 
instantly flow from it. For the person appointed 
to execute one of the offices which had been filled by 
Mahomed Reza Eh&n did soon find that the eunucha 
of Munny Begum began to employ their power with 
great superority and insolence in all the concerns 
of government and the administration of justice, and 
did endeavor to dispose of the offices relative to the 
same for their corrupt purposes, and to rob the Na- 
bob's servants of their due allowances; and in his 
letter of the 1st September, 1778, he sent a com- 
plaint to the board, stating, " that certain bad men 
had gained an ascendency over the Nabob's temper, 
by whose instigation he acts " ; and after complaining 
of the slights he received from the Nabob, he adds : 
" Thus they cause the Nabob to treat me, sometimes 
with indignity, at others with kindness, just as they 
think proper to advise him; their view is, that, by 
compelling me to displeasure at most unworthy treat- 
ment, they may force me either to relinquish my sta- 
tion, or to join with them, and act by their advice, 
and appoint creatures of their recommendation to 
the different offices, from which they might draw 
profit to themselves." 

XXI. That, in a b '^sequent letter to the Gover- 
nor, the said Superintei.dent of Justice did inform 
him, the said Warren Hastings, of tho audacious and 




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corrupt manner in which, by violence, fraud, and 
forgery, the eunuchs of Munny Begum had abused 
the Nabob's name, to deprive the judicial and exec- 
utory officers of justice of the salaries which they 
ought to have drawn from the Company's treasury, 
in the following words: "The Begum's ministers, 
before my arrival, with the advice of their counsel- 
lors, caused th^ Nabob to sign a receipt, in conse- 
quence of whicli they received, at two different times, 
near 60,00 rupees [5,000Z.], in the name of the 
officers of the Adawlut, Phousdary, Ac, from the 
Company's sircars; and having drawn up an ac- 
count-current in the manner they wished, they had got 
the Nabob to sign it, and sent it to me." And in 
the same letter he asserts, "that these people had 
the Nabob entirely in their power." 

XXII. That the ^aid "Warren Hastings, upon this 
representation, did, notwithstanding his late pretend- 
ed opinion of the fitness and the right of the Nabob to 
the sole administration of his own affairs, authorita- 
tively forbid him from any interference therein, and 
ordered that the whole should be left to the magistrate 
aforesaid ; to which the Nabob did, notwithstanding 
his pretended independence, yield an immediate and 
unreserved submission : for the said Hastings's order 
being given on the 1st of September at Calcutta, he 
received an ansicer from Moorshedabad on the 3d, in 
the following terms: "Agreeably to your pleasure, I 
have relinquished all concern with the affairs of the 
i'housdary and Adawlut, leaving the entire manage- 
ment in Sudder ul Hock's hands." Which said cir- 
cumstance, as well as many others, abundantly proves 
that all the Nabob's actions were in truth and fact en- 



tirely govenicd by the influence of the said Hastings, 
and that, however the said Hastings may have pub- 
licly discourager the corrupt transactions of the said 
court, J t he did secretly uphold the authority and 
influence of Munny Begum, who did entirely direct, 
with his knowledge and countenance, all the proceed- 
ings therein. For 

XXin. That on the 13th of the same month of 
September he did receive a further complaint of the 
corrupt and fraudulent practices of the chief eunuch 
of the said Munny Begum ; and these corrupt prac- 
tices did so continue and increase, that on the 10th of 
October, 1778, he was obliged to confess, in the stron- 
gest terms, the pernicious consequences of his before- 
created unwarrantable and illegal arrangements ; for, 
in a letter of that date to the Nabob, he exprt^sses 
himself as follows. « At your Excellency request, 
I sent Sudder ul Hock Khan to take on him the ad- 
ministration of the affairs of the Adawlut and Phous- 
dary, and hoped by that means not only to have given 
satisfaction to your Excellency, but that, through his 
abilities and experience, these afiairs would have been 
conducted in such manner as to have secured the 
peace of the country and the happiness of the peo- 
ple ; and it is with the greatest concern I learn that 
this measure is so far froir -g attended with the 
expected advantages, thai affairs both of the 

Phousdary and Adawlut arc !ie greatest co...usion 
imaginable, and daily robberies and :nurdcrs are per- 
petrated throughout the country. This is evidently 
owing to the want of a proper authority in the person 
appointed to superintend them. I therefore addressed 
your Excellency on the importance and delicacy of 

VOL. IZ 13 

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the affairs in question, and of the necessity of lodg- 
ing full power in the hands of the person chosen to 
administer them ; in reply to which your Excellency 
expressed sentiments coincident with mine ; notwith- 
standing which, your dependants and people, actu- 
ated by selfish and avaricious vietvs, have by their 
interference so impeded the business as to throw the 
whole country into a state of confusion, from which 
nothing can retrieve it but an unlimited power lodged 
in the hands of the superintendent. I therefore request 
tiiat your Excellency will give the strictest injunctions 
to all your dependants not to interfere in any manner 
with any matter relative to the aflFairs of the Adawlut 
and Phousdary, and that you will yourself relinquish 
all interference therein, and leave them entirely to the 
management of Sudder ul Hock Khan : this is abso- 
lutely necessary to restore the country to a state of 
tranqviillity " And he concluded by again recom- 
uicnding tl,L Nabob to withdraw all interference with 
the administrator aforesaid : " otherwise a measure 
which I adopted at your Excellency's request, and 
with a view to your satisfaction and the benefit of the 
country, will be attended with quite contrary eflfects, 
and bring discredit on me." 

XXrV. That the said Hastings, in the letter afore- 
said, in which he so strongly condemns the acts and 
so clearly marks out the mischievous effects of the 
corrupt influence under which alone the Nabob acted, 
and under which alone, from his known incapacity, 
and his dependence on the person supported by the 
said Hastings, he could act, did propose to put ail the 
offices of justice (which on another occasion he had 
requested him to permit to remain in the hands which 



then held them) into his own disposal, — telling him, 
or rather the woman and eunuchs who governed him, 
" that, if his Excellency has any plan for the manage- 
ment of the affairs in future, bo pleased to communi- 
cate it to me, and every attention shall be paid to give 
your Excellency satisfaction " : by which means not 
only particular parts, as before, but the whole system 
of justice was to be afloat, and to be subject to the 
purposes of the aforesaid corrupt cabal of women and 


XXV. That the Court of Directors, on receiving 
an account of the above arrangements, and being 
well apprised of the spirit, intention, and probable 
effect of the same, did, in a clear, firm, and decisive 
manner, express tlieir condemnation of the measure, 
and their rejection and reprobation of all the pre- 
tended grounds and reasons on wliich the same was 
supported, — marking distinctly his prevarication and 
contradictions in the same, and pointing to him their 
full conviction of tlie unworthy motives on which he 
had made so shameful an arrangement : telling him, 
in the 17th paragraph of their general letter of the 
4th of February, 1779, " The Nabob's letters of the 
25th and 30th of August, of the 3d of September, 
and 17th of November, leave us no doubt of the true 
design of this extraordinary business being to bring 
forward Munny Begum, and again to invest her with 
improper power and influence, notwithstanding our 
former declaration, that so great a part of the Na- 
bob's allowance had been embezzled and misapplied 
under her superintendence." 




XXVI. That, in consequence of the censure and 

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condemnation of the unwarrantable measures of the 
said Warren Hastings by tlie Court of Directors, 
on the aforesaid and other weighty and substantial 
grounds, they did order and direct as follows, in the 
20th paragraph of the general letter of the same 
date, " As we deem it for tlie welfare of the country 
that the office of Naib Subahdar be for the present 
continued, and that this high office should be filled 
by a person of wisdom, experience, and of approved 
fidelity to the Company, and as we have no reason 
to alter the opinion given of Mahomed Reza Khan 
in our letter of the 24th of December, 1776, we posi- 
tively direct, that you forthwith signify to the Nabob 
Mobarek ul Dowlah our pleasure that Mahomed Reza 
Khan be immediately restored to the office of Naib 
Subahdar ; and we further direct, that Mahomed Re- 
za KhSn be again assured of the continuance of our 
favor, so long as a firm attachment to the interest 
of the Company and a proper discharge of the duties 
of his station shall render him worthy of our protec- 

XXVII. That the aforesaid direction did convey in 
it such evident and cogent reason, and was so far en- 
forced by justice to individuals and by regard to the 
peace and happiness of the natives, as well as by the 
common decorum to be observed in all the transac- 
tions of government, that the said Hastings ought to 
have yielded a cheerful obedience thereto, even if he 
had not been by a positive statute, and h\s relation 
of servant to the Company, bound to that just sub- 
mission. Yet the said Hastings did, without deny- 
ing or evading auy one of the reasons assigned by the 
Court of Director's, or controverting the scandalous 





motiTes assigned hy them for his conduct, contuma- 
ciously refuse obedience to the above positive order, 
on pretence that the Nabob, who, he had declared it 
on record " to be as visible as the light of the sun, 
is a mere pageant, and without even the shadow of 
authority," did dissent from the same; and he did 
encourage the said Nabob, or -ather the eunuchs, the 
corrupt ministers of Munny iiegum, to oppose himself 
and themselves to the authority of the said Court 
of Directors: by which means the anu,iigement, three 
times either ratified or expi3ssly ordered by them, 
was wholly defeated ; the aforesaid corrupt system 
was continued ; Mahomed Rcia Khdn was not re- 
stored to his office ; and a lesson was taught to the 
natives of all ranks, that the declared approbation, 
the avowed sanction, and the decided authority of 
the Court of Directors were wholly nugatory to their 
protection against the corrupt influence of their ser- 



XXVIII. That the said Warren Hastings, on a 
reconciliation with Mr. Francis, one of the Council- 
General, who made it a condition thereof that certain 
of the Company's orders should be obeyed, and that 
Mahomed Reza Khan should be resto^'ed to his offi- 
ces, did, a considerable time after, notwithstanding 
the pretended reluctance of the Nabob, and his pre- 
tended freedom, make, for his convenience in the 
said accommodation, the arrangement which he had 
unwarrantably and illegally refused to the orders of 
the Court of Directors, and did of his own authority 
and that of the board restore Mahomed Reza Khun 
to his offices. 






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XXTX. Tliat soon after the departure of the said 
Mr. Francis he did again deprive the said Mahomed 
Reza Ehau of liis said offices, and did make several 
great changes in the constitution of the criminal 
justice in the said country ; and after having, under 
pretence of the Nabob's sufficiency for the manage- 
ment of his own affairs, displaced, without any spe- 
cific charge, trial, or inquiry whatsoever, the said 
Mahomed Reza Khan, he did submit the said Nabob 
to the entire dir..ction, in all parts of his concerns, of 
a Resident of his own nomination, Sir John D'Oyly, 
Baronet, and did order an account of the most mi- 
nute parts of his domestic economy to be made out, 
and to be delivered to the said Sir John D'Oyly, in 
the following words, contained in a paper by him 
intituled, INSTRUCTIONS from the Governor-Gen- 
eral to the Nabob Mobarek ul Dowlah respecting his 
conduct in the management of his affairs. " You 
will be pleased to direct your mutaeddies to form 
an account of the fixed sums of your montlily ex- 
penses, such as servants' wages in the different de- 
partments, pensions, and other allowances, as well as 
of tlie estimated amount of variable expenses, to bo 
delivered to Sir John D'Oyly for my inspection. I 
have given such orders to Sir John D'Oyly as will 
enable him to propose to you such reductions of the 
pensions and other allowances, and such a distribu- 
tion of the variable expenses, as shall be proportion- 
able to the total sum of your monthly ipnome ; and 1 
must request you will confcrm to it" And he did, in 
the subsequent articles of his said instructions, order 
the whole management to be directed by Sir John 
D'Oyly, subject to his own directions as aforesaid; 
and did even direct what company he should keep ; 






•nd did throw reflections on some persons, in )»ace<! 
the nearest to him, as of bad clia'"icter and base ori- 
gin, — persons whom ho should decline to name as 
such, " unless he heard that they still availed them- 
selvos of his goodness to retain the places which they 
improperly hold near his person." And he did par- 
ticularly order the said Nabob not to admit any Eng- 
lish, but such as the said Sir John D'Oyly should 
approve, to his presence ; and did repeat the said 
order i; the following peremptory manner: "You 
must forbid any person o{ that nation to be intruded 
into your presence without hi» introduction." And 
he did require his obedience in the following author- 
itative style : " I shall think myself obliged to inter- 
fere in another manner, if you neglect it." 

XXX. Tliat he, the said Warren Hastings, did 
insult the captive condition of the said Nabob by 
informing him, in his imperious instructions afore- 
said, that this total,, and implicit obedience, 
in every respect whatsoever, to Sir John D'Oyly and 
himself personally, and witliout any reference to tlie 
board, "was the very conditions of the compliance 
of the Governor-General and Council with his late 
requisition"; which requisition was, that he should 
enjoy the free and uncontrolled management of his 
own affairs. And though the said captive did offer, 
as he, the said Hastinf^s, himself admits,/o«r lacs of 
his stipend, at that time red .ed to sixteen lac, for 
the free use of the remainder, yet he did place him, 
the said Nabob, in the state of servitude in the said 
instructions laid down but a very short time after ho 
had assumed and used the said Nabob's independent 
rights as a ground for refusing to obey tho Cora.- 



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pany's orders, — and although he has declared, or 
pretended, on another occasion, which he would have 
thought similar, that any attempt to limit the house- 
hold expenses of the Nabob of Oude was an indig- 
nity, *' which no man liring, however moan his rank 
in life, or dependent hid condition in it, would per- 
mit to be exercised by any other, without the want 
or forfeiture of every manly principle." 

XXXI. That the said Warren Hastings did order 
the said stipend (which was to bo distributed, in the 
minutest partici !ar, according to the said Hastings's 
personal directions) to be paid monthly, not to any 
officer of the Nabob, but to the said Resident, Sir 
John D'Oyly. And whereas the Governor-General 
and Council did, inpointment of Mahomed 

Reza KhSn, accoK ^ir duty, instruct him, 

that " he do conform 'er« of the Company, 

wliich direct that an annu<*. -^count of the Nabob's 
expenses be transmitted through the Resident at the 
r.irl>ar, for the inspection of this hoard," the said 
Hastings, in making his new establishment in favor 
of his Resident, did wholly omit the said instruction, 
and did confine the said communication to himself^ 
privately. And in fact it does not appear that any 
account whatsoever of the disposition of the said 
large sum, exceeding 160,000?. sterling a year, has 
been laid before the board, or at least that any sucli 
account has been transmitted to the Court of Direc- 
tors; and it is not fitting that any British servant 
of tlie Company should have the management of any 
public money, much less of so great a sum, without 
a public well-vouched account of the specific expen- 
diture thereof. 

m ''f 




XXXII. Tl»at the Court of Directors did, on laa 
17th of May, 1766, propose certain rules for rcgulatr 
ing the correspondonco uf the Resident with the Na- 
bob of Bengal, in which they did direct, as a prin- 
ciple for the said regulations, as follows (paragraph 
16th). " We would have his correspondence to he 
carried on with the Select Committee through the 
channel of the President: he should keep a diary 
of all his transactions. His correspondence with the 
iiii'/.ves munt be publicly conducted: copies of all his 
letters, sent and received, be uausmiited monthly to 
the Presidency, with duplicates and triplicates to be 
transmitted home in our general packet by every 

XXXIII. Tliat the President and Select Com- 
mittee (Lord Clivo being then President) did ap- 
prove of the whole substantial part of the said reg- 
ulation (the diary excepted; : and the principle, in 
all matters of account, ought to have been strictly 
adhered to, whatever limitations may have been given 
to the office of Resident. Yet ho, the said Warren 
Hastings, in defiance of the aforesaid good rules, or- 
ders, and late precedent in conformity to the same, 
did not only withhold any order for the purpose, but, 
in order to carry on the business of the said durbar 
in a clandestine manner for his own purposes, did, 
as aforesaid, exclude all English from an intercourse 
with the Nabob, who might carry complaints or 
representations to the board, or the Court of Di- 
rectors, of his condition, or the conduct of the Resi- 
dent,— and did further, to defeat all possible pub- 
licity, insinuate to him to give th preference to 
verbal communication above letters, in the words 


t I 










following, of the ninth article of his instructions to 
the Nabob : " Although I desire to receive your let- 
ters frequently, yet, as many matters will occur which 
cannot be bo easily explained hy letters ae by conver- 
sation, I desire that you will on such occasions give 
your orders to him respecting such points as you 
may desire to have imparted to me; and I, post- 
poning every other concern, will give an immediate 
and the most satisfactory reply concerning them." 
Accordingly, no relation whatsoever has been re- 
ceived by the Court of Directors of the said Nabob's 
affairs, nor any account of the money monthly paid, 
except from public fame, which reports that his af- 
fairs are in great disorder, his servants unpaid, and 
many of them dismissed, and all the Mussulmen de- 
pendent on his family in a state of indigence. 




I. That Shah Allum, the prince commonly called 
the Great Mogul, or, by eminence, ITie King, is, or 
lately was, in the possession of the ancient capital 
of Hindostan, and though without any considerable 
territory, and without a revenue sufficient to main- 
tain a moderate state, he is still much respected and 
considered, and the custody of his person is eagerly 
sought by many of the princes in India, on account 
of the use to be made of his title and authority; 
and it was for the interest of the East India Com- 
pany, that, while on one hand no wars shall be en- 
tered into in support of his pretensions, on the other 
no steps should be taken which may tend to deliver 



him into the hands of any of the powerful states of 
that country, but that he should be treated with 
friendship, good faith, and respectful attention. 

II. That "Warren Hastings, in contradiction to this 
safe, just, and honorable policy, strongly prescribed 
and enforced by the orders of the Court of Directors, 
did, at a time when he was engaged in a negotiation 
the declared purpose of wliich was to give peace to 
India, concur with the captain-general of tlio Mah- 
ratta state, called Mahdajee Siiidia, in hostile designs 
against the few remaining territories of that same 
Mogul emperor, by virtue of whose grant the Com- 
pany actually possess the government and enjoy the 
revenues of great provinces, and also against the 
possessions of a Mahomedan chief called Nudjif 
Khan, a person of much merit with the East India 
Company, in acknowledgment of which they had 
granted him a pension, included in the tribute due 
to the king, and, together with that tribute, taken 
from him by the said Warren Hastings, though ex- 
pressly guarantied to him by the Company. With 
both these powers the Company had been in friend- 
ship, and wore actually at peace at the time of 
the said clandestine concurrence in a design against 
them ; and the said Hastings hath since declared, 
tliat the right of one of them, namely, " the right 
of the Mogul emperor, to our assistance, has been 
constantly acknowledged." 

III. That the said Warren Hastings, at the time 
of his treacherous concurrence in a design against 
a power which he was himself of opinion we were 
bound to assist, and against whom there was no 

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doubt he was bound neither to form nor to concur 
in any hostile attempt, did give a caution to Colonel 
Muir, to whom the negotiation aforesaid was intrust- 
ed on the part of the Company, against " inserting 
anything in the treaty which might ei^ressly mark 
our hiowledge of his [the Mahratta general's] views, 
or concurrence in them." Which said transaction was 
full of duplicity and fraud ; and the crime of the said 
Hastings therein is aggravated b/ his having some 
years before withheld the tribute v,h'ch by treaty was 
solemnly agreed to be paid to th ^ '^^i .d king, ou pre- 
tence tliat he had thrown himself, for the recovery of 
his city of Delhi, on the protection of the Mahrattas, 
whom the said "Warren Hastings then called the natu- 
ral enemies of the Company, and the growth of whose 
power he then alleged to be highly dangerous to the 
interests of this kingdom in India. 

IV. That, after having concurred, in the manner 
before mentioned, in a design of the Mahrattas against 
the Mogul, and notwithstanding he, the said Warren 
Hastings, had formerly declared, " that with him [the 
Mogul] our connection had been a long time sus- 
pended, and he wished never to see it renewed, as it 
had proved a fatal drain to the wealth of Bengal and 
the treasury of the Company, without yielding one 
advantage or possible resource, even of remote bene- 
fits, in return," the said Warren Hastings did never- 
theless, ou or about the month of March, 1783, with 
the privity and consent of the members of the board, 
but by no authoritative act, dispatch, as agents of 
him, the Governor-General only, and not as agents 
of the Governor-General and Council, as they ought 
to have been, certain persons, among whom were Ma- 

i ( 





jor Browne and Major Davy, to the court of the king 
at Delhi, and did there enter into certain engage- 
ments with the said king by the means of those agents, 
and did carry on certain private and dangerous in- 
trigues for various purposes, particularly for making 
war in favor of the said king against some powers or 
princes not precisely described, but which, as may be 
inferred from a subsequent correspondence, were cer- 
tain Mahomedan princes in the neighborhood of Delhi 
in amity with the Company, and some of them at that 
time in the actual service and in tlip apparent confi- 
dence and favor of the said Mogvj ' he did order 
Major Browne to offer to tlie Mo^^ g to provide 
for the entire expense of ani/ troops .;ie Shah [the said 
king] might require; and the proposal was accord- 
ingly accepted, with the conditions annexed : by 
which proposal and acceptance thereof the East India 
Company was placed in a situation of great and per- 
plexing difficulty ; since either they were to engage, 
at an unlimited expense, in new wars, contrary to 
their orders, contrary to their general declared pol- 
icy, and contrary to the published resolutions of the 
House of Commons, and wholly incompatible with 
the state of their finances, or, to preserve peace, they 
must risk the imputation of a new violation of faith, 
by departing from an agreement made on the volun- 
tary proposal of their own government, — the agent 
ol the said Hastings having declared, in his letter 
to the said Hastings, by him communicated to the 
board, " that the business of assisting the Shah [the 
Mogul emperor] can and must go on, if wc wish to be 
secure in India, or regarded as a nation of faith and 







: \ n 




>f ;^ 

V. Tliat the 

1 Warren Hastings did, on the 20th 
day of January, 1784, send in circulation to the oth- 
er members of the Council a letter to him from his 
agent, Major Browne, dated at Delhi, on the 30th of 
December, 1783, viz., that letter to wliich the forego- 
ing references are made, in which the said Browne 
did directly p 3ss, and indirectly (though sufficiently 
and strongly) suggest, several highly dangerous meas. 
ures for rpf« the general offers and engagements 
of the said Warren Hastings, — proposing, that, be- 
sides a proportion of field artillery, and a train of 
batterinf, cannon for the purpose of sieges, six regi- 
ments of sepoys in the Company's service should be 
transferred to that of the said king, and that certain 
other corps should also be raised for the said service 
in the English provinces and dependencies, to be im- 
mediately .nder the king's [the Mogul's] orders, and 
to be maintained by assignments of territorial reve- 
nue withi.i the province of Oude, a dependent mem- 
ber of the British government, but with a caution 
against having any British officer with the same ; the 
said Major Browne expressing his caution as foUow- 
eth: "If any European officer be wiih this corps, a 
very nice judgment indeed must direct the choice; 
for scarce any are in the smallest degree fit for such 
employ, but much more likely to do harm than good." 
And the letter aforesaid being without any observa- 
tion thereon, or any disavowal of the matters of fact 
or of the counsels so strongly and authoritatively de- 
livered therein by tlie said Warren Hastings's agent, 
and without any mark of disapprobation of any part 
of his plan, whether that of the assignment of terri- 
tory belonging to the Company's allies for the main- 
tenance of troops which were to be by that plan put 




under the orders of a foreign independent power, or 
thai of employing the said troops without any British 
officer with them, or for his alarming observation by 
him entered on the Company's records, which, if not 
an implied censure on tlie nature of the service in 
which British officers are supposed improper to be 
trusted, is a strong reflection on the character of tho 
British officers, which was to render them unfit to be 
employed in an honorable service, — the said Warren 
Hastings did thereby give a countenance to the said 
unwarrantable and dangerous proposals and reflec- 

VI. That a considerable time before the produc- 
tion and circulation of Major Browne's letter, the said 
Hastings did enter a Minute of Consultation contain- 
ing a proposition similar in the general intent to that 
in the said letter contained for assisting the Mogul 
with a military force ; but the other members of the 
board did disagree thereto, and, being alarmed at the 
disposition so strongly shown by the said Hastings to 
engage in new wars and dangerous foreign connec- 
tions, and possibly having intelligence of the proceed- 
ings of his agent, did call upon him to produce his 
instructions to Major B''owne ; and he did, on the 5th 
of October, 1783, and not before, enter on the Con- 
Bult.tions a certain paper purporting to be the in- 
structions which he had given to Major Browne the 
preceding March, the time of his, the said Browne's, 
appointment, in which pretended instructions no di- 
rection whatsoever was given to tin effect of his, the 
said Hastings's, Minute of Consultation propounded : 
that is to say, no power was given in the said instruc- 
tions to make a direct offer of military aid to the 










W •' 

' u 

- J 

.■ 1, 
I! :ig» 


i .' 





Mogul, or to form the arrangements stated by the 
said Browne, in his letter to the said Hastings, as hav- 
ing been made by the express autliority of the said 
Hastings himself; but the said instructions contained 
nothing further on that subject but a conditional di- 
rection, that, in case a military force should be re- 
quired for the Mogul's aid or protection, the Major is 
to know the service on "s-hich it is to be employed, 
and the resources from whence it is to be paid ; and 
the instructions produced as his real instructions by 
the said Hastings are so guarded as to caution the 
said Browne against taking any part in the intrigues 
of those who are about the king's person. By which 
letters, instructions, and transactions, compared with 
each other, it appears that the said Warren Hastings, 
after six months' delay in entering of (contrary to 
the Company's order) any instructions to the said 
Browne, did at last enter a false paper £s the true, or 
tliat he did give other secret instructions, totally dif- 
ferent from, and even opposite to, kis public ostensi- 
ble instructions, thereby to deceive the Council, and 
to carry on with less obstruction dark and dangerous 
intrigues, contrary to the orders of the Court of Di- 
rectors, to the true policy of this kingdom, and to the 
safety of the British possessions in the East. 


til, I' 


Vn. That the said letter from Major Browne was 
by the said Warren Hastings transmitted to the Court 
of Directors, without being accompanied by any part 
of the previous correspondence ; by which wilful con- 
cealment the said Warren Hastings is guilty of an 
high and criminal disrespect to the Court of Direc- 
tors, and of a most flagrant breach and violation of 
their orders, which he was bound by an act of Par- 
liament to obey. 




Vin. Tliat the said Hastings having early in the 
year 1784 procured to himself a deputation to act in 
the upper provinces, the Council, being well awaro 
of his disposition to engage in unwarrantable designs 
against the neighboring states, did expressly confine 
his powers to tlio circumstance of his actual resi- 
dence within the Company's provinces. But it ap- 
pears that ways were found out by which he hoped 
to defeat the precautions of the board : for the said 
Warren Hastings did write from Lucknow, the capi- 
tal of the country of Oude, to the Court of Directors, 
a certain postscript of a letter, dated the 4th of May, 
1784, in which he informs the Court that the son and 
heir-apparent of the Great Mogul had taken refuge 
with him and the Nabob of Oude; that he had a 
conference with that prince on the 10th of the same 
month of May, " no person being either present or 
within hearing " during the same ; and that in the 
said conference the prince had informed him of the 
distresses of his father, and his wish for the relief of 
the king and the restoration of the dominions of his 
house, as well as to rescue him from the power of 
certain persons not named, who degraded him into 
a mere instrument of their interested and sordid de- 
signs, and that, on a failure of his application to him, 
he would e'ther return to his father, or proceed to 
Calcutta, and thence to England ; and that the said 
Warren Hastings did give him an answer to the fol- 
lowing elfect: "That our [the British] government 
had just obtained relief from a state of universal 
warfare, and required a term of repose ; that our 
whole nation was weary of war, and dreaded the 
renewal of it, and would be equally alarmed at any 
movement of which it could not tee the insue or progress, 




f f 


IJ if 



hut which might eventually tend to create new hostili- 
ties ; tliat he came hither [to Lucknow] with a limit- 
ed authority, and could not, if he chose it, engage in 
a business of that nature without the concurrence of 
his colleagues in office, who he believed would be adverse 
to it ; that he would represent the same to the joint 
members of his own government, and wait their 
determination. In the mean time he advised the 
prince to make advances to Mahdajee Sindia, both 
because our government was in intimate and sworn 
connection with him, and because he was the effectual 
heud of the Mahratta state ; besides that he [the said 
"Warren Hastings] feared his [Sindia's] taking the 
other side of the question, unless he was early pre- 

IX. That in the statement of this discourse there 
is much criminal reserve towards the Court of Direc- 
tors, — it not appearing distinctly what the objecta 
were, nor who the persons concerned, nor what the 
side was which he appi'eliended the Mahrattas might 
take, if not prevented by his advances ; and in the 
discourse itself there were many particulars highly 
criminal, namely, — for that in the said conversation, 
in which he describes himself as declining a compli- 
ance with the request of the prince on account of 
the aversion (therein strongly expressed) of his col- 
leagues, of the Company, and of the whole British 
nation, to engage in any measures which might even 
" eventually lead to hostilities" he spoke to the prince 
as if he had been entirely ignorant of the offers which 
but five months before had bee made to the king, 
his father, on the part of that very government, 
(whose repugnance to such measures he then for the 



first time chose to profess, but which he always had 
known,) through Major Browne, tlie Company's rep- 
resentative at the court of Delhi, " to provide for tlie 
entire expense of any troops which tin Shah [the 
king] might require," and that this was " what the 
Resident had always proposed to the king and his 
confidential ministers," — the said Browne further de- 
claring, " that, if, in consequence of the said propos- 
als, certain arrangements for the Shah's service by 
troops were not immediately ordered, in his opinion 
all our [ English government's] offers and promises 
will be considered as false and insidious." This be- 
ing the k lown state of the business, as represented 
by the said Hastings's own agent, and this the public 
opi?iion of it, although to impose on lie ignorance 
of the prince with regard to tlie proceedings at his 
father's court would have been unworthy in itself, 
yet he, the said Warren Hastings, could no; hope to 
succeed in such imposition, as in the postscript afore- 
said he represents the said prince (who was the king's 
eldest son, and thirty-six years of age) as a person of 
considerable qualifications, and perfectly acquainted 
with the transactions at his father's court, and as 
one who had long held the principal and most active 
part in the little that remained of the administration 
of Shah Allum. And the said Hastings conferring 
with a prince so well instructed, without making the 
slightest allusions to his said positive and recent en- 
gagements, or without giving any explanation with 
regard to them, tlie said Warren Hastings must ap- 
pear to the said prince either as a person not only 
contracting engagements, but actually being the first 
mover and proposer of them, without any authority 
from his colleagues^ and against theirs and the geu- 

.' .",' 




'ft -41 

eral inclination of the British nation, and on that 
ground not to be trusted, or that he had used this 
plea of disagreement between him and his Council 
as a pretence, set up without color or decency, for a 
gross Tiolation of his own engagements, leaving the 
princes and states of the country no solid ground on 
which thoy can or ought to ct -act with the Com- 
pany, to the utter do tructica o' . public confidence, 
and to the equal disgrace of the national candor, in- 
tegrity, and wisdom. 

X. Tliat in a letter dated from the same place, 
Lucknow, the 16th of the following June, 1784, the 
said Warren Hastings informs the Court of Directors, 
that Major 3rowne, their agent to the Mogul, had 
arrived there in the character also of agent from the 
Mogul, with two sets of instructions from two oppo- 
site parties in his ministry, which instructions were 
directly contrary to each other : the first, which wore 
the ostensible instructions, being to engage the said 
Hastings, in the Mogul's name, to enter into a treaty 
of mutual alliance with a chief of the country, then 
minister to the said Mogul, called Afrasaib Khan ; the 
second were from another principal person, called 
Mudjed ul Dowlah, also a minister of the said Mogul, 
(but styled in the said letter confidential, for distinc- 
tion,) which were directly destructive of the former ; 
and the said latter instructions, to wliich it seems 
credence was to be given, were sent " under the most 
solemn adjurations of secrecy." Tlie purpose of these 
latter and secret instructions was to require the Com- 
pany's aid in freeing the Mogul from the oppres- 
sions of his servants, namely, from the oppressions 
of the said Afrasaib, between whom and the Com- 





pany Major Browjie (at once agent to that Company, 
and to two opposite factions in the Mogul's court) 
accepted a power to make a treaty of mutual alliance 
under the sanction of his sovereign. And it does not 
appear that he, Warren Hastings, did discountenance 
the double-dealing and fraudulent agencies of his 
and the Company's minister at that court, or did dis- 
avow any particular in the letter from him, the said 
Browne, of the 30th of December, 1783, stating the 
offers made on his part to the Mogul, so contradic- 
tory to his late declarations to the heir-apparent of 
that monarch, or did give any reprimand to the said 
Browne, or did show any mark of displeasure against 
him, as having acted without orders, but did again 
send him, with renewed confidence, to the court afore- 

XI. That the said Warren Hastings, still pursu- 
ing his said evil designs, did apply to the Council for 
discretionary powers relative to the intrigues and 
factions in the Mogul's court, giving assurances of 
his resolution not to proceed against th sense ; but 
the said Council, being fully aware of his disposi- 
tion, and having Major Browne's letter, recorded by 
himself, the said Warren Hastings, before their, did 
refuse to grant the said discretionary powers, but, 
on the contrary, did exhort him "most sedulously 
and cautiously to avoid, in his correspondence with 
the different princes in India, whatever may commit, 
or be strained into an interpretation of committing 
the Company, either as to their army or treasure," — 
observing, " that the Company's orders are positive 
against their interference in the objects of dispute 
between the country powers." 


/ '! 




XII. That, in order to subvert the plain and natu- 
ral interpretation given by the Council to t!ie orders 
of the Court of Directors, and to justify his dangerous 
intrigues, the said Warren Hastings, in his letter of 
the 16th Juno, 1784, to tlie said Court, did, in a most 
insolent and contemptuous manner, endeavor to per- 
suade them of their ignorance of the true sense of 
their own orders, and to limit their prohibition of in- 
terference with the disputes of the country powers to 
such country powers as are permanent, — exprossing 
himself as follows : «' The faction which now surrounds 
the throne [the Mogul's throne] is widely different 
from the idea which your commands are intended to 
convey by the expressions to which you have generally 
applied them, of country powers, to winch that of per. 
manency i» a necessary adjunct, and which may be 
more properly compared to a splendid bubble, which 
the slightest breath of opposition may dissipate with 
every trace of its existence." By which construction 
the said Hastings did endeavor to persuade the Court 
of Directors that they meant to confine their prohi- 
bition of sinister intrigues to those powers only who 
could not be easily hurt by them, and whose f<trength 
was such that their resentment of such clandestine 
interference was to be dreaded ; but that, where the 
powers were weak and fragile, such intrigues might 
be allowed. 

XIII. That the said Hastings, further to persuade 
the Court of Directors to involve themselves in the 
affairs of the Mogul, and to reconcile this measure 
with his former conduct and declared opinions, did 
write to them to the following effect: That " at that 
former period to which the ancient policy with regard 



,7 1 


to the Mogul applied, tho king's authority •""» suflS- 
cieiitly rospoctcd" (which he know not to I -, — 

having himself declared, in hi» minrto o. 2oth 

of October, 1774, "that ho reni i; at Dellii, the 
auciunt capital of tho orapiro, a mere cipher in tho ad- 
ministration of it") to maintain itself against com- 
mon vicissitudes ; that he would not have advised in- 
terference, if tho king himself retained the exercise 
of it, however feeble, in his own hands ; that, if it [the 
Mogul's authority] is suffered to receive its final ex- 
tinction, it is impossible to foresee what power may 
arise out of its ruins, or what events may be linked in 
tho same chain of revolution with it: but your inter- 
ests may suffer by it, your reputation certainly will, as 
his right to our assistance has been constantly acknowl- 
edged, and by a train of consequences to which our gov- 
ernment has not intentionally given birth, but most 
especially by the movements wliich its influence, by too 
near an approach, has excited, it has unfortunately be- 
come tho efficient instrument of a great portion of 
the king's present distresses and dangers," — intimat- 
ing (as well as the studied obscurity of his expressions 
will permit anything to be discerned) that his own 
late intrigues had been among tho causes of the dis- 
tresses and dangers, which by new intrigues he did 
protend to remove : and he did conclude this part of 
his letter with some loose general expressions of his 
caution not to affect the Company's interests or reve- 
nues by any measures he might at that time take. 

XIV. That the principle, so far as the same hath 
been directly avowed, of the said proceedings at the 
Mogul's court, was as altogether irrational, and the 
pretended object as impracticable, as the means taken 



., H 







in pursuit of it were fraudulent and dishonorable, 
namely, the restoration of the Mogul in some degree 
to the dignity of his situation, and to his free agency 
in the conduct of hia affairs. For the said Hastings, 
at the very time in which he did with the greatest 
apparent earnestness urge the purpose which he pre- 
tended to have in view with regard to the dignity and 
liberty of the Mogul emperor, did represent him as 
a person wholly disqualified, and even indisposed, to 
take any active part whatsoever in the conduct of his 
own affairs, and that any attempt for that purpose 
would be utterly impracticable ; and this he hath 
stated to the Court of Directors as a matter of public 
notoriety, in his said letter of the 16th of June, 1784, 
in the following emphatical and decisive terms, 

" You need not be told the character of the king, 
whose inertness, and the habit of long-suffering, has 
debased his dignity and the fortunes of his house 
beyond the power of retrieving either the one or the other. 
Whilst his personal repose is undisturbed, he will 
prefer to live in the meanest state of indigence, under 
the rule of men whose views are bounded by avarice 
and the power which they derive from his authority, 
rather than commit any share of it to his own sons, 
(though his affection for them is boundless in every 
other respect,) from a natural jealousy, founded on 
the experience of a very different combination of 
those circumstances which once served as a tempta- 
tion and example of unlawful ambition in the princes 
of the royal line. His ministers, from a policy more 
reasonable, have constantly employed every means of 
influence to confirm this disposition, and to prevent 
his sons from having any share in the distribution of 
affairs, so as to have established a complete usurpation 





of the royal prerogative under its own sanction and 

XV. That the said Warren Hastings, having given 
this opinion of the sovereign for whose freedom he 
pretended so anxious a concern, did describe the min- 
ister with whom he had long acted in concurrence, 
and from whom he had just received the extraordina- 
ry secret embassy aforesaid for the purpose of effect- 
ing the deliverance of his master, the Mogul, from the 
usurpations of his ministers, as follows. "The first 
minister, Mudjed ul Dowlah, is totally deficient in 
every military quality, conceited of his own superior 
talents, and formed to the practice oiihat crooked pol- 
icy which generally defeats its own purpose, but sin- 
cerely attached to his master." The reality of the 
said attachment was not improbable, but altogether 
useless, as the said minister was the only one among 
the principal persons about the king who (besides the 
total want of all military and civil ability) possessed 
no territories, troops, or other means of serving and 
supporting him, but was himself solely upheld by his 
influence over his master: neither doth the said Hast- 
ings free him, any more than the persons more efli- 
cient, wlio were to be destroyed, from a disposition to 
alienate the king from an attention to his afiairs, and 
from all confidence in his own family ; but, on the 
contrary, he brings him forward as the very first 
among the instances he adduces to exemplify the 
practices of the ministers against their sovereign and 
his children. 

' '1 1 


XVI. That the said "Warren Hastings, recommend- 
ing in general terms, and ye^. condemning in detail, 



11 •' 

If '(I 

every part of his own pretended plan, as impractica- 
ble in itself, and as undertaken in favor of persons all 
of whom he describes as incapable, and the principal 
as indisposed to avail himself thereof, must have had 
some other motives for this long, intricate, dark, and 
laborious proceeding with the Mogul, which must be 
sought in his actions, and the evident drift and ten- 
dency thereof, and in declarations which v ore brought 
out by him to serve other purposes, but which serve 
fully to explain his real intentions in this intrigue. 

XVII. That the other members of the Council- 
General having abundantly certified their aversenesa 
to his intrigues, and even having shown apprehen- 
sions of his going personally to the Mogul and the 
Mahrattas for the purpose of carrying on the same, 
the said Hastings was driven headlong to acts which 
did much more openly indicate the true nature and 
purpose of his machinations. For he at length re- 
curred directly, and with little disguise, to the Mah- 
rattas, and did open an intrigue with them, although 
he was obliged to confess, in his letter aforesaid of 
the 16th June, 1784, that the exception which be 
contended to be implied in the orders of the Court of 
Directors forbidding the intermeddling in the disputes 
of " the country powers," namely, " powers not per- 
manent," did by no means apply to the Mahrattas; 
and he informs the Court of Directors that he did, 
on the very first advice he received of the flight of 
the Mogul's son, write to Mr. James Anderson to ap- 
prise the Mal»ratta chief, Siudia, of that event, — " for 
which as he was unprepared, he desired his [the 
said Siudia's] advice for his conduct on the occasion 
of it." Which method of calling for the advice of a 

• I n 






foreign power to regulate his political conduct, in- 
stead of being regulated therein by the advice of the 
British Council and the standing orders of the Court 
of Directors, was a procedure highly criminal; and 
the crime is aggravated by his not communicating 
the said correspondence to the Council-General, as by 
his duty he was bound to do ; but it does abundantly 
prove his concert with the Mahrattas in all that relat- 
ed to his negotiations in the Mogul court, which were 
carried on agreeably to their advice, and in subser- 
viency to their views and purposes. 

XVIII. That, in consequence of the cabal begun 
with the Mahrattas, the said chief, Sindia, did send 
his " familiar and confidential ministers " to him, the 
said Hastings, being at Lucknow, with whom the said 
Hastings dif" ' ^ several secret conferences, without 
any score' ■ , ■ ! ..ther assistant: and the said Hast- 
ings hath . r -veyed to the Court of Directors any 
minutes th^ _ , , but hath purposely involved even the 
general effect and tendency of tliese conferences in 
such obscurity that it is no otherwise possible to per- 
ceive the drift and tendency of the same, but by the 
general scope of councils and acts relative to the pol- 
itics of the Mogul and of the Mahrattas together, and 
by the final event of the whole, which is sufficiently 
visible. For 

XIX. Tliat the said Hastings had declared, in his 
said letter of the 16th June, 1784, that the Mogul's 
right to our assistance had been constantly acknowl- 
edged, that the Mogul had been oppressed by the less- 
er Mahomedan princes in the character of his offi- 
cers of state and military commanders, and ho did 







plainly intimate that the said Mogul ought to be re- 
lieved from that serritude. And he did, in giving an 
account to the Court of Directors of the conferences 
aforesaid, assure them that " his inclinations [the in- 
clinations of the Mahratta chief aforesaid] were not 
very dissimilar frjin his own " ; and that " neither in 
tliis nor in any oilier instaucp would he suffer himself 
to be drawn into measures \(hich shall tend to weaken 
their connection, nor in this even to oppose his [the 
said chiefs] inclinations": the said Hastings well 
knowing, as in his letter to Colonel Muir of the 

he has confessed, that the inclinations of 

the said Sindia were to seize on the Mogul's territo- 
ries, and that he himself did secretly concur therein, 
though he did not formally insert his concurrence in 
the treaty with the said Mahratta chief. It is plain, 
therefore, that he did all along concur with the Mah- 
rattas in their designs against the said king and hi: 
ministers, under the treacherous pretence of support- 
ing the authority of the former against the latter, and 
did contrive and effect the ruin of them all. For, 
first, he did give evil and fraudulent comisel to the 
heir-apparent of the Mogul " to make advances to the 
Mahrattas," when he well knew, and had expressly 
concurred in, the designs of that state against his 
father's, the Mogul's, dominions ; and further to 
engage and entrap the said prince, did assert that 
" our government " (meaning the British govern- 
ment) "was in intimate and sworn connection with 
Mahdajee Sindia," when no alliance, offensive or de- 
fensive, appears to exist between the said Sindia and 
the East India Company, nor can exist, otherwise 
than in virtue of some secret agreement between 
him, the said Sindia, and Warren Hastings, entered 

I , 




into by the latter without the knowledge of his col- 
leagues and the government, and never communicat- 
ed to the Court of Directors. And, secondly, he did, 
in order to further the <1osigns of the Mahrattas, con- 
trive and effect the ruin of the said Mogul and his 
authority, by setting on foot, through the aforesaid 
Major Browne, sundry perplexed and intricate ne- 
gotiations, contrary to public faith, and to the honor 
of the British nation ; by which he did exceedingly 
increase the confusion and disorders of the Mogul'8 
court, exposing the said Mogul to new indignities, in- 
sults, and distresses, and almost all of the northern 
parts of India to great and ruinous convulsions, un- 
til three out of four of the principal chieftains,, some 
of them possessing the territories lately belonging to 
Nudjif Khln, and maintaining among them eighty 
thousand troops of horse and foot, and some of which 
chiefs were the ministers aforesaid, being cut off by 
their mutual dissensions, and the fort of Delhi being 
at length delivered to the Mahrattas, the said Sindia 
became the uncontrolled ruler of the royal army, and 
the person of the Mogul, with the use of all his pre- 
tensions and claims, fell into the hands of a na'ion 
already too powerful, together with an extensive ter- 
ritory, which entirely covers the Company's posses- 
sions and dependencies on one side, and particularly 
those of the Nabob of Oude. 


XX. That the circumstances of these countries did, 
in the opinion of the said Warren Hastings himself, 
sufficiently indicate to him the necessity of not ag- 
grandizing any power whatsoever on their borders, 
he having in the aforesaid letter of the 16th June 
given a deliberate opinion of the situation of Oude in 




the words following: "That, whilst we are at peace 
with the powers of Europe, it is only in this quarter 
that your possessions under the government of Ben- 
gal are vulnerable." And he did further in the said 
letter state, that, " if things had continued as they had 
been to that time, with a divided government," (viz., 
the Company's and the Vizier's, which government 
he had himself established, and under which it ever 
must in a great degree remain, whilst the said coun- 
try continues in a state of dependence,) " the »Ught- 
est shock f.*om a foreign hand, or even an accidental 
internal commotion, might have thrown the whole in- 
to confusion, and produced the most fatal consequen- 
In this perilous situation he made the above- 


recited sacrifices to the ambition of the Mahrattas, 
and did all along so actively countenance and forward 
their proceedings, and with so full a sense of their ef- 
fect, that in his minute of the 24th December, 1784, 
he has declared, " that in the countries which border 
on the dominions of the Nabob Vizier, or on that 
quarter of our own, in effect there is no other power." 
And he did further admit, that the presence of the 
Mahratta chief aforesaid, so near the borders of the 
Nabob's dominions, was no cause of suspicion ; for 
*' that it is the eifect of his own solicitation, and is so 
far the effect of an act of that government." 


XXI. That, in further pursuit of ' same perni- 
cious design, he, the said Warren Hastings, did enter 
into an agreement to withdraw a very great body of 
the British troops out of the Nabob's dominions, — as- 
serting, however truly, yet in direct contradiction to 
his own declarations, that " this government " (mean- 
ing the British government) "has not any right to 




force defence with its maintenance upon him" (the 
Nabob) ; and he did thus not only avowedly aggran- 
dize the Mahratta state, and weaken the defence upon 
the frontier, but did as avowedly detain their captain- 
general in force on that very frontiei , notwithstand- 
ing he was well apprised that they had designs against 
those dependent territories of Oude, which they had 
with great difficulty been persuaded, eve>- in appear- 
ance, to include in the treaty of peac.. —and that 
they have never renounced their claims upon certain 
large and valuable portions of them, und have shown 
evident signs of their intentions, on the first opportu- 
nity, of asserting and enforcing them. And, finally, 
the said Warren Hastings, in contradiction to sundry 
declarations of his own concerning the necessity of 
curbing the power of the Mahrattas, and to the prin 
ciple of sundry measures undertaken by himself pro- 
fessedly for that purpose, and to the sense of the 
House of Commons, expressed in their resolution of 
28th May, 1782, against any measures that tended to 
unite the dangerous powers of the Mahratta empire 
under one active command, has endeavored to per- 
suade the Company, that, " while Sindia lives, every 
accession of territory obtained by him will be an ad- 
vantage to this [the British] government"; which 
if it was true as respecting the personal dispositions 
of Sindia, which there is no reason to believe, yet it 
was highly criminal to establish a power in the Mah- 
rattas which must survive the man in confidence of 
whose personal dispositions a power more than per- 
sonal was given, and which may hereafter fall into 
hands disposed to make a more hostile use of it. 

XXn. That, ill consequence of all the hefore- 







recited intrigues, the Mogul emperor being in the 
hands of the Mahrattas, he, the said Mogul, has been 
obliged to declare the head of the Mahratta state 
to be vicegerent of the Mogul empire, an authority 
which supersedes that of Vizier, and has thereby 
consolidated in the Mahratta state all the powers 
acknowledged to be of legal authority in India; in 
consequence of which, they have acquired, and have 
actually already attempted to use, the said claims of 
general superiority against the Company itself, — the 
Mahrattas claiming a right in themselves to a fourth 
part of the revenues of all the provinces in the Com- 
pany's possession, and claiming, in right of the Mogul, 
the tribute due to him : by which actings and doings 
the said Hastings has to the best of his power brought 
the British provinces in India into a dependence on 
the Mahratta state : and in order to add to the afore- 
said enormous claims a proportioned force, he did 
never cease, during his stay in India, to contrive the 
means for its increase ; for it is of public notoriety, 
that one great object of the Mahratta policy is to 
unite under their dominion the nation or religious 
sect of the Seiks, who, being a people abounding with 
soldiers, and possessing large territories, would ex- 
tend the Mahratta power over the whole of the vast 
countries to the northwest of India. 


XXIII. That the said Warren Hastings, further 
to augment the power of the said Mahrattas, and to 
endanger the safety of the British possessions, having 
established in force the said Mahrattas on the fron- 
tier, as afore-recited, and finding the Council-Gen- 
eral averse in that situation to the withdrawing the 
British forces therefrom, and for disbanding them to 





the extent required by the said Hastings, did, in a 
minute of the 4th Decembe", 1784, after stating a 
supposition, that, contrary to his opinion, the said 
troops should not be reduced, propose to employ them 
under the command of the Mogul's sen, then under 
the influence of the Mahrattas, in a war against the 
aforesaid people or religious sect called Seiks, defend- 
ing the same on the following principles : " I feel tho 
eense of an obligation, imposed on me by the suppo- 
sition I have made, to state a mode of rendering the 
detachment of use in its prescribed station, and of af- 
fording the appearance of a cause for its retention." 

XXIV. That the said Hastings did admit that 
there was no present danger to the Company's pos- 
sessions from that nation which could justify him in 
such a war, as he had declared that the Mahrattas 
were the only power that bordered on the Company's 
possessions and those of the Vizier ; but he did assign 
as a reason for going to war with them their mili- 
tary and enthusiastic spirit, — the hardiness of their 
natural constitution, — the dangers which might arise 
from them in some future time, if they should ever 
happen to be united under one head, they existing 
at present in a state little difierent from anarchy; 
and he did predict great danger from them, and at 
no very remote period, " if this people be permitted 
to grow into maturity without interruption." And 
though he doth pretend that the solicitations of the 
heir-apparent of the Mogul, who, he says, did repeat- 
edly and earnestly solicit him to obtain the permission 
to use the Company's troops for the purpose aforesaid, 
had weight with him, yet he doth declare, as he ex- 
presses himself ia the minute aforesaid, that "a 













ttronger impulse^ arising from the hope of hlatting tht 
growth of a generation whose strength might bocomo 
fatal to our own, strongly pleaded in my mind for sup- 
porting his wishes." 

XXV. That the said Warren Hastings, after forci- 
Itly recommending the plan aforesaid, did state strong 
objections, that did, "in his judgment, outweigh the 
advantages which might arise from a compliance with 
it." Yet the said Hastings, being determined to pur- 
sue his scheme for aggrandizing at any rate the Mah- 
ratta power, in whoso adult growth and the recent 
effects of it he could see no danger, did pursue the 
design of war against a nation or sect of religion in 
its infancy, from whom he had received no injury, 
and in whose present state of government he did noi 
apprehend any mischief whatsoever ; and finding the 
Council fixed and determined on not disbanding the 
frontier regiments, and thinking that therein he had 
found an advantage, he did ground thereon the fol- 
lowing proposition. 

" If the expense [of the front • troops] is to be 
continued, it may be surely better continued for some 
useful purpose than to keep up the parade of a great 
military corps designed merely to lie inactive in its 
quarters. On this ground, therefore, and on the 
supposition premised, I revert to my original senti- 
ments in favor of the prince's plan ; but as this will 
require some qualification in the execution of it, I 
will state my recommendation of it in the terms of a 
proposition, viz., that, if it shall be the resolution of 
the board to continue the detachment now unde- the 
command of Colonel Sir John Curaming at Furruck- 
abad, and if the prince Mirza Jehander Shah shall 
apply, with the authority of the king, and the concurrence 




of Mahdajee Stndia, for the assistance of an English 
military force, to act in conjunction with him, to ex- 
pel the Seiks from the territories of which they have 
lately possessed themselves in the neighborhood of 
Delhi, it may be granted, an<^ such a portion of the 
said detachment allotted to that service as shall be 
hereafter judged adequate to it." 

XXVI. That the said Warren Hastings did, in the 
said pro,)' .sal, endeavor to circumvent and overreach 
the Council-General, by converting an apparent and 
literal compliance with their resolution into a real 
and substantial opposition to and disappointment 
thereof. For his first proposal was, to withdraw the 
Company's troops from the Vizier's country on the 
pretence of relieving him from the burden of that 
establishment, but in reality with a view of facilitat- 
ing the Mahratta pretensions on that province, which 
would then be deprived of tlie means of defence. 
And when the Council rejected the said proposal on 
the express ground of danger to the province by with- 
drawing from the Mahrattas the restraint of our 
troops, the said Hastings, finding his first scheme in 
favor of the Mahrattas against the provinces depend- 
ent on the Company defeated by the refusal of the 
Council to concur in the said measure of withdrawing 
the troopH, did then endeavor to obtain the same pur- 
pose in a different way; and instead of leaving the 
troops, according to tlie intention and policy of the 
Council, as a check to the ^m!)ition and progress of 
the Mahrattas, lie proposed to employ them in the 
actual furtherance of those schemes of aggrandize- 
aujint of which his colleagues wero jealous, and which 
it was the objoct of their resolution to counteract. 


'I I 








XXVII. That, in the whole of ti • letter.-, i ego- 
tiatione, proposals, and projects of the said ^^ uran 
Hastiugs relative to the Mogul, he did appear to pur 
sue but one object, namely, the aggrandizement of 
the lately hostile and always dangcious power of the 
Mahrattas, and did pursue the same by means high- 
ly dishonorable to the British character for honor, 
justice, candor, plain-dealing, moderation, and hu- 




I. That Warren Hastings, Esquire, was, during 
the whole of the year 1783, a serrant of the East In- 
dia Company, and was bound by the duties of that 
relation not onl^ to yield obedience to the orders of 
the Court of Directors, but to give to the whole of 
tlieir service an example of submission, reverence, 
and respect to their authority ; and that, if they 
should in the course of their duty call in question 
any part of his conduct, ho was bound to conduct his 
defence with temper and decency ; and while his con- 
duct was under their consideration, it was not allow- 
able to print and publish any of his letters to them 
without their consent first had and obtained ; and he 
was bound by the same principles of duty, enforced 
by still more cogent reasons, to observe, in a paper 
intended for publication, great modes rv and modera- 
tion, and to treat the said Court ot Jjirectors, his 
lawful masters, with respect. 


n. That the said Warren Hastings did print and 
publish, or cause to be printed and published, at 
Calcutta in Bengal, the narrative of bis transactions 





at Benares, in a letter writton at that place, *-itliout 
leave had of the Court of Dir cton, in order o pre- 
occupy the judgment of the servants m thai ottle- 
mont, and to gain from tliem a factious countenance 
and support, previous to ihe judgment Mid Of lion 
of the Court of Duecwrs, hib lawful superiors. 

III. That tlie Court of Diroctorb, having come to 
certain resolutions of fact relative to the engage- 
ments subsisting between them and the Rtyah of 
Benares, and the m; me" in which the same had 
been fulfilled on the part of tise Rajah, did, in the 
fifth resolution, wliich was partly a resolution of iviu- 
ion, d dare aa follows: "Taal it appears to this 
Court that the conduct of the Governor-General t > 
wards the Rajah, whilst he was at Benur . was iiu- 
proper; j.ud that the imprisonment of lus p.ji-sou, 
therely iisgracing hiui in the eyes of his subjects 
and others, was luiwarran table and highly impolitic, 
and may tend to weaken the ( 'ufidenc which the 
native princes of India ought to have in the justice 
and mouuration of the Compa,, "s government." 

IV. That the said resoluuons being transmitted 
to the said Warren Hastings, he, the suid Warren 
Hastings, did write, auu cause to be printed and 
tmblishe i. a certaui fals .u^olent, mai :iou8, and 

•iditiou lioel, purportiuK to be a letter from him, 
the said Warren Hastings, to t le 'ourt of Directors. 

iatpil Port W Uiam, 20th March, 1788. ' ca -lulatod, 
as thv Directors truly affirm, " to bring contempt, as 
wv ' as an odium, on the Court of Directors, lor 
their conduct on that occasion" ; aiid the said libel 
had I direct tendency to excite a spirit of disolnj 








dience to the lawful government of this nation in 
India through all ranks of their service. 

V. That he, the said Warren Hastings, among 
other insolent and contumacious charges and asper- 
sions on the Court of Directors, did address them in 
the printed letter aforesaid as follows. " I deny that 
Rajah Cheyt Sing was a native prince of India. 
Cheyt Sing is the son of a collector of the revenue of 
that province, which his arts, and the misfortunes of 
his master, enabled him to convert to a permanent 
and hereditary possession. This man, whom you 
have thus ranked among the princes of India, will be 
astonished, when he hears it, at an elevation so un- 
looked for, nor less at the independent rights which 
t/our commands have assigned him, — rights wliich 
are so foreign to his conceptions, that I doubt whether 
he will know in what language to assert them, unless 
the example which tfou have thought it consistent with 
Justice, however opposite to policy, to show, of becoming 
his advocates against your oum interests, should inspire 
any of your own servants to be his advisers and instruc- 
tors." And he did further, to bring into contempt 
the authority of the Company, and to excite a re- 
sistance to their lawful orders, frame a supposition 
that the Court of Directors had intended the resto- 
ration of the Rajah of Benares, and on that ground 
did presume in the said libel to calumniate, in dis- 
respectful and contumelious terms, the policy of the 
Court of Directors, as well as the person whom ho 
did conceive to be the object of their protection, as 
foUoweth. " Of the consequences of such a policy I 
forbear to speak. Most happily, the wretch whose 
hopes may be excited by the appearances in his favor is 



m qualified to avail himself of therriy and the force 
which is stationed in the province of Benares is sufficient 
to suppress any symptoms of internal sedition ; but it 
cannot fail to create distrust and suspense in the 
minds both of the rulers and of the people, and such 
a state is always productive of disorder. But it is 
not in this partial consideration that I dread the ef- 
fects of your commands ; it ir in your proclaimed 
indisposition against the first executive member of 
your first government in India. I almost ..hudder 
at the reflection of what might have happened, had 
these denunciations against your own minister, in fa- 
vor of a man universally considered in this part of 
the world as justly attainted for his crimes, the mur- 
derer of your servants and soldiers, and the rebel to 
your authority, arrived two months earlier." 

VI. That the said Warren Hastings did also pre- 
sume to censure and asperse the Court of Directors 
for the moderate terms in which they had expressed 
their displeasure against him, as putting him under 
the necessity of stating in his defence a strong ac- 
cusation against himself, and as implying in the said 
Court a consciousness that he was not guilty of the 
offences charged upon him, — being, as he asserts, 
in the resolutions of the Court of Directors, "ar- 
raigned and prejudged of a violation of national faith, 
in acts of such complicated aggravation, that, if they 
were true, no punishment SHORT OF DEATH could 
atone for the injury which the interest and credit of 
the public had sustained in them " ; and he did there- 
fore censure the said Court for applying no stron- 
ger or more criminating epithets than those of " im- 
proper, unwarrantable, and highly impolitic," to an 



■ *! 


1 1, 









offence so by them charged, and by him described. 
And though it be true that the expressions aforebaid 
are much too reserved for the purpose of duly char- 
acterizing the offences of the said Hastings, yet was 
it in him most indecent to libel the Court of Direc- 
tors for the same; and his 11 '.plication, from the 
tenderness of the epithets and descriptions afore- 
said used towards him, was not only indecent, but 
ungrounded, malicious, and scandalous, — he having 
himself highly, though truly, aggravated " the charge 
of the injuries done by him to the Rajah of Be- 
nares," in order to bring the said Directors into con- 
tempt and suspicion, the par^-graphs in the said libel 
being as follow. — "Here I a; ist crave leave to say, 
that the terms ' improper, unwarrantable, and highly 
impolitic ' are much too gentle, as deductions from 
such premises ; and as every reader of the latter will 
obviously feel, as he reads, the deductions which in- 
evitably belong to them, I will add, that the strict 
performance of solemn engagements on one part, fol- 
lowed by acts directly subversive of them and by 
total dispossession on the other, stamps on the per- 
petrators of the latter the guilt of the greatest possi- 
ble violation of faith and justice." — " There is an 
appearance of tenderness in this deviation from plain 
construction, of which, however meant, I have a right 
to complain ; because it imposes on me the necessity 
of framing the terms of the accusation against my- 
self, which you have only not made, but have stated 
the leading arguments to it so strongly, that no one 
who reads these can avoid making it, or not know it 
to have been intended." 

Vn. That the said Hastings, being well aware that 



his own declarations did contain the clearest condem- 
nation of his own conduct from his own pen, did in 
the said libel attempt to overturn, frustrate, and ren- 
der of none eflFect all the proofs to be given of pre- 
varication, contradiction, and of opposition of action 
to principle, which can be used against men in public 
trust, and did contend that the same could not be used 
against him ; and as if false assertions could be jus- 
tified by factious motives, he did endeavor to do away 
the autliority of his own deliberate, recorded declara- 
tions, entered by hi'n in viriting on the Council-Books 
of the Presidency ; for, after asserting, hvi not attempt- 
ing to prove, that his declarations were consistent with 
his conduct, he writes in the said libel as follows : For 
" were it otherwise, they were not to be made the 
rules of my conduct ; and God forbid that every ex- 
pression dictated by the impulse of present emergen- 
cy, and unpremeditatedly uttered in the heat of party 
contention, should impose upon me the obligation of 
a fixed principle, and be applied to every variable oc- 


I » 

VIII. That the said Hastings, in order to draw the 
lawful dependence of the servants of the Company 
from the Court of Directors to a factious dependence 
on himself, did, in the libel aforesaid, treat the acts 
and appointments of their undoubted authority, when 
exercised in opposition to his arbitrary will, as ruinous 
to their afiFairs, in the following terms. " It is as well 
known to the Indian world as to the Court of English 
Proprietors, that the first declaratory instruments 
of the dissolution of my influence, in the year 1774, 
were Mr. John Bristow and Mr. Francis Fowke. By 
your ancient and known constitution the Governor 



1 .1 ' 






has been ever held forth and understood to possess 
the itensible powers of government ; all the corre- 
spondence with foreign princes is conducted in hia 
name ; and every person resident with them for the 
management of your political concerns k- understood 
to be more especially his representative, and of his 
choice: and such ought to bo the rule; for how 
otherwise can they trust an agent nominated against 
the will of his principal ? When the state of this ad- 
ministration was such as seemed to admit of the ap- 
pointment of Mr. Bristow to the Residency of Luck- 
now without much diminution of my own influence, I 
gladly seized the occasion to show my readiness to 
submit to your commands ; I proposed his nomina- 
tion ; he was nominated, and declared to be the agent 
of my own choice. Even this effect of my caution is 
defeated by your absolute command for his reappoint- 
ment independent of me, and with the supposition that 1 
should be adverse to it. — I am now wholly deprived of 
my official powers, both in the province of Oude, and 
in the zemiudary of Benares." 

IX. That, further to emancipate others and him- 
self from due obedience to the Court of Directors, he 
did, in the libel aforesaid, enhance his services, which, 
without specification or proof, he did suppose in the 
said libel to be important and valuable, by represent- 
ing them as done under their displeasure, and doth 
attribute his not having done more to their opposition, 
as followeth, " It is now a complete period of eleven 
years since I first received the first nominal charge 
of your affairs ; in the course of it I have invariably 
had to contend, not with ordinary difficulties, but 
such as most unnaturally arose from the opposition of 

;. i 




those very powers from which I primarily derived my 
authority, and which were required for the support of it. 
Mj exertions, though applied to an unvaried and con 
fiisteut line of action, have been occasional and desul- 
tory ; yet I please myself with the hope, that, in the 
annals of your dominion, which shall be written after 
the extinction of recent prejudices, this term of its 
administration will appear not the least conducive 
to the interests of the Company, nor tue least reflec- 
tive of the honor of the British name : and allow me 
to suggest the instructive reflection of what good might 
have been done, and what evil prevented, had due sup- 
fort been given to that administration which has per- 
formed such eminent and substantial services without 

And the sdd Hastings, further to render the au 
thority of the said Court perfectly contemptible, doth, 
in a strain of exultation for his having escaped out of 
a measure in which by his guilt he had involved the 
Company in a ruinous war, and out of which it had 
escaped by a sacrifice of almost all the territories be- 
fore acquired (from that enemy which he had made) 
either by war or former treaties, and by the abandon- 
ing the Company's allies to their mercy, attribute the 
said supposed services to his acting in such a manner 
as had on former occasions excited their displeasure, 
in the following words. " Pardon, Honorable Sirs, 
this digressive exultation. I cannot suppress .lie 
pride wliich I feel in this successful achievement of 
a measure so fortunate for your interests and the na- 
tional honor ; for that pride is the source of my zeal, 
so frequently exerted in your support, and never more 
happily than in those instances in which I h'^ve de- 
parted from the prescribed and beaten path of action, 




and asaumed a retpontibility which hat too frequenlUy 
drawn on me the mott poirUed effecti of your displeas- 
ure. But however I may yield to my private feelings 
iu thus enlarging on the subject, my motive in intro- 
ducing it was immediately connected with its context, 
aud was to contrast the actual state of your political 
affairs, derived from a happier influence, with that which 
might have attended an earlier dissolution of it" : aud 
he did value himself upon " the patience and temper 
with which he had submitted to all the indignities 
which have been heaped upon him" (meaning, by 
the said Court of Directors) " in this long service " ; 
and he did insolently attribute to an unusual strain 
of zeal for their service, that he "persevered in the 

X. That, in order further to excite the spirit of 
disobedience in the Company's servants to the lawful 
autliority set over them, he, tlie said Warren Hast- 
ings, did treat contemptuously and ironically the sup- 
posed disposition of the Company's servants to obey 
tlie orders of the Court of Directors, iu the words 
following. " The recall of Mr. Markham, who was 
known to be the public agent of my own nomination 
at Benares, and the reappointment of Mr. Francis 
Fowke by your order, contained in the same letter, 
would place it [the restoration of Cheyt Sing] beyond 
a doubt. This order has been obeyed; and whenever 
you shall be pleased to order the restoration of Cheyt 
Sing, I will venture k> promise the same ready and ex- 
act submission in the other members of the Council." 
Aud lie did, in the postscript of the said letter, aud as 
on recollection, endeavor to make a reparation of hon< 
or to liis said colleagues, as if his expressions aforesaid 



had arisen from animosity to them, as follows. " Up- 
on a careful revisal of what I have written, I fear that 
an expression which I have used, respecting the proba- 
ble conduct of the board in the event of orders being 
received for the restoration of Cheyt Sing, may be con- 
strued as intimating a sense of dissatisfaction applied 
to transactions already past. — It is not my intention 
to complain of any one." 

XI. That the said Hastings, in the acts of injury 
aforesaid to the Rajah of Benares, did assume and ar- 
rogate to himself an illegal authority therein, and did 
maintain that the acts done in consequence of that 
measure were not revocable by any subsequent au- 
thority, in the following words. " If you should pro- 
ceed to order the restoration of Cheyt Sing to tht zem- 
indary, from which, by the powers which Ilegally poii- 
ietted, and conceive myself legally bound to assert 
against any subsequent authority to the contrary derived 
from the same common source, he was dispossessed for 
crimes of the greatest enormity, and your Council 
shall resolve to execute the order, I will instantly give 
up my station and the service." 

Xn. That the said Warren Hastings did attempt 
to justify his publication of the said libellous letter to 
and against the Court of Directors by asserting there- 
in that these resolutions (meaning the resolutions 
of the Court of Directors relative to the Rajah of Be- 
nares) " were either published or intended for publi- 
cation " : evidently proving that he did take this un- 
warrantable course without any sufficient assurance 
that the ground and motive by him assigned had any 


1. 1\ 









I. That by an act passed in 1778 it was expressly 
ordered and provided, " that it should not be lawful 
for any President and Council of Madras, Bombay, or 
Bencooleu, for the time being, to make any orders 
for commencing hostilities, or declaring or making 
war, against any Indian princes or powers, or for ne- 
gotiating or concluding any treaty of peace, or other 
treaty, with any such Indian princes or powers, with- 
out the consent and approbation of the Governor- 
General and Council first had and obtained, except 
in such cases of imminent necemty as would render it 
dangerous to postpone such hostilities or treaties un- 
til the orders from the Governor-General and Council 
might arrive." That, nevertheless, the President and 
Council of Bombay did, in December, 1774, without 
the consent and approbation of the Governor-General 
and Council of Fort William, and in the midst of 
profound peace, commence an unjust and unprovoked 
war against the Mahratta government, did conclude 
a treaty with a certain person, a fugitive from that 
government, and proscribed by it, named Ragonaut 
Row, or Ragoba, and did, under various base and 
treacherous pretences, invade and conquer the island 
of Salsette, belonging to the Mahratta government. 

II. That Warren Hastings, on the first advices 
received in Bengal of the above transactions, did con- 
demn the same in the strongest terms, — declaring 
that " the measures adopted by the Presidency of 
Bombay had a tendency to a very extensive and in- 
definite scene of troubles, and that their conduct was 
unseasonable, impolitic, unjust, and unauthorized." 



And tlio Governor-General and Council, in order to 
put a stop to the said unjust hostilities, did appoint 
an ambassador to the Peshwa, or chief of the Mahrat- 
ta state, resident at Poonah ; and the said ambassador 
did, after a long negotiation, conclude a definitive 
treaty of peace with the said Peshwa on terms highly 
honorable and beneficial to the East India Company, 
who by the said treaty obtained from the Mahrattas 
a cession of considerable tracts of country, the Mah- 
ratta share of the city of Baroach, twelve lacs of ru- 
pees for the expenses of the said unjust war, and 
particularly the island of Salsette, of which the Presi- 
dency of Bombay had possessed themselves by sur- 
prise and treachery. That, in return for these ex- 
traordinary concessions, the articles principally in- 
sisted on by the Mahrattas, with a view to tlieir own 
future tranquillity and int(;rnal quiet, were, that no 
assistance should be given to any subject or servant qf 
the Peshwa that should cause disturbances or rebellion 
in the Mahratta dominions, and particularly that the 
English should net assist Ragonaut Row, to whom 
the Mahrattas agreed to allow five lacs of rupees 
a year, or a jaghire to that amount, and that he 
should reside at Benares. Tliat, nevertheless, the 
Presidency of Bombay did receive and keep Rago- 
naut Row at Bombay, did furnish him with a con- 
siderable establishment, and continue to carry on 
secret intrigues and negotiations with him, thereby 
giving just ground of jealousy and distrust to the 
Mahratta state. That tlie late Colonel John Upton, 
by whom the treaty of Poorunder was negotiated and 
concluded, did declare to the Governor- General and 
Council, " tliat, while Ragonaut Row resides at Bom- 
bay in expectation of being supported, the ministers 





K ( 

can place no confidence in the Council there, which 
must now be productive of the greatest inconveniencies, 
and perhaps in the end of fatal consequences." That 
the said Warren Hastings, concurring with his Coun- 
cil, which then consisted of Sir John Clavering, Rich- 
ard Barwell, and Philip Francis, Esquires, did, on tho 
18th of August, 1777, declare to the Presidency of 
Bombay, that " he could see no reason to doubt that 
the presence of Ragoba at Bombay would continue to 
be an intuperable bar to the completion of the treaty 
concluded with the Mahratta government ; nor could 
any sincere cordiality and good understanding be es- 
tablished with them, as long as he should appear to 
derive encouragement and support from the English." 
That Sir John Clavering died soon after, and that the 
late Edward Wheler, Esquire, succeeded to a seat in 
the Supreme Council. That on the 29th of January, 
1778, the Governor-General and Council received a 
letter from the Presidency of Bombay, dated 12th 
December, 1777, in which they declared, " that they 
had agreed to give encouragement to a party formed 
in Ragoba's favor, and flattered themselves they 
should meet with the hearty concurrence of the 
Governor-General and Council in the measures they 
might be obliged to pursue in consequence." That 
the parti/ so de;- -ribed was said to consist of four 
principal persons in tlio Mahratta state, on whose 
part some overtures had been made to Mr. William 
Lewis, the Reside it of Bombay at I'oonah, for the 
aanstance of the Company to bring Ragoha to I'oonah. 
That the said Warren Hastings, immediately on the 
receipt of the preceding advices, did propose and 
carry it in Council, by means of his casting voice, 
and against the remonstrances, arguments, and sol- 




emn protest of two members of the Supreme Coun- 
cil, tliat the sanction of that government should bo 
given to the plan which the President and Council 
of Bombay had agreed to form w'th the Mahratta 
government; and also that a supplj jf money (to the 
amount of ten lacs of rupees) should bo immediately 
granted to the President and Council of Bombay /or 
the tupport of their engagements above mentioned; and 
also that a military force ohould be sent to the Presi- 
dency of Bombay. Tliat in defence of these resolu- 
tions the said Warren Hastings did falsely pretend 
and affirm, " that the resolution of the Presidency of 
Bombay was formed on such a case of imminent neces- 
sity as would have rendered it dangerous to postpone 
tlje execution of it until the oidors from the Gov- 
ernor-General and Council might arrive; and that 
the said Presidency of Bombay were warranted by the 
treaty of Poorunder to join in a plan for conducting 
Ragonaut Row to Poonah on the application of thu 
ruling part of the Mahratta state" : whereas the main 
object of the said treaty on the part of the Mahrattas, 
and to obtain which they made many important con- 
cessions to the India Company, was, that the English 
should withdraw their forces, and give no assistance 
to Ragoba, and that he should be excluded forever 
from any share in their government, being a person 
universally held in abhorrence in the Mahratta empire ; 
and if it had been true (instead of being, as it was. 
notoriously false) that the ruling part of the admin- 
istration of the Mahratta state solicited the return 
of Ragonaut Row to Poonah, his return in that case 
might have been effected by acts of their own, with- 
out the interposition of the English power, and with- 
out our interference in their affairs. That it was the 

,' ;: 


!*> ' 








special duty of the said Warren Hastings, denred 
from a special trust reposed iu him and power com- 
mitted to him by Parliament, to have restrained, as 
by law ho had authority to do, the subordinate Presi- 
dency of Bombay from entering into hostilities with 
the Mahrattas, or from making engagements the man- 
ifest tendency of which was to eater into those hostil- 
ities, and to liavj put a stop to them, if any such had 
boon begun ; that he was bound by the duty of his 
office to preserve the faith of the British governmeut, 
pledged in the treaty of Poorunder, inviolate and sa- 
cred, as well as by the special orders and instructions 
of the East India Company to fix Ma attention to the 
preservation of peact, throughout India: all which im- 
portant duties the said Warren Hastings did wilfully 
violate, iu giving the sanction of the Governor-Gteneral 
and Council to the dangerous, faithless, and ill-con- 
certed projects of the President and Council of Bom- 
bay hereinbefore mentioned, from which the subse- 
quent Mahratta war, with all the expense, distress, 
and disgraces whicli have attended it, took their com- 
mencement; and that the said Warren Hastings, 
therefore, is specially and principally answerable for 
the said war, and for all the consequences thereof. 
Tliat in a letter dated the 20th of January, 1778, the 
President and Council of Bombay informed the Gov- 
ernor-General and Council, that, in consequence of 
later intelligence received from Poonah, they had im- 
mediately resolved that nothing further covld he done, 
unless Saccaram Baboo, the principal in the late treaiy 
(of Poorunder) joined in making a formal application 
to them. That no such application was ever made by 
that person. That the said Warren Hastings, finding 
that all tbis pretended ground for engaging in an in- 

AOAnrer warren p <mN08. 


TUion (^f the Mahratta governmuiit had totally hilcd, 
did then pretend to give credit to, and to bo gi eatly 
alarmed by, the suggestions of the President mid 
Council of Bombay, that the Mahratras were n< -DiMtr 
ingwith the Frf Mich, and had agreed to give theui ihe 
port of Choul, on ihe Malabar coaHt, and did affirm 
that the French had obtained po»»et»ion of that port. 
That all these suirgcstions and ussertious were false, 
and, if they had i)oc true, would have furnished no 
just occasion for attacking eitiicr the Mahrattn!^ or 
the French, with i)oth of whom the British nation 
was then at peace, ''hat the said Warren Ilastings 
did then prop(tse and carry the following resolution 
in Council, against the protest of two members there- 
of, that, " for the purpose of granting you [the Presi- 
dency of Bombay] the most effectual support in our 
power, we have resolved to assemble a strong military 
force near Calpee, the commanding officer of which 
is to be ordered to march by the most practicable 
route to Bombay, or to such other place as future oc- 
currences and your directions to him may render it 
expedient " ; and with rt'spect to the ttepa said to be 
taking by the French to ohtain a settlement on the Mala' 
bar coast, the said Warrei. Hastings did declare to the 
Presidency of Bombay, " that it was the opinion of 
the Governor-General and Council that no time ought 
to be lost in forming and carrying into execution such 
measures as might most effectually tend to frustrate 
such dangerous designs." That the said Warren 
Hastings, therefore, instead of fixing his attention to 
the preservation of peace throughout India, ;. 5 it was 
his duty to have done, did continue to abet, encourage, 
and support the dangerous projects of the Presiden- 
cy of Bombay, and did thereby manifest a determined 





! iS'. 





intention to disturb the peace of India, by the unfor- 
tunate success of which intention, and by the contin- 
ued efforts of the said Hastings, the greatest part of 
India has been for several years involved in a bloody 
and calamitous war. That both the Court of Direc- 
tors and Court of Proprietors did specially instnxct 
the said Warren Hastings, in all his measures, " to 
make the safety and prosperity of Bengal his princi- 
pal object," and did heavily censure the said Warren 
Hastings for having employed their troops at a great 
distance from Bengal in a war against the Rohillas, 
which the House of Commons have pronounced to be 
iniquitous,* and did on that occasion expressly declare, 
" that they disapproved of all such distant expeditions 
as might eventually carry their forces to any situation 
too remote to admit of their speedy and safe return 
to the protection of their own provinces, in case of 
emergency." f That the said Warren Hastings never- 
theless ordered a detachment from the Bengal army 
to cross the Jumna, and to proceed across the penin- 
sula by a circuitous route through the diamond coun- 
try of Bundelcund, and through the dominions of 
the Rajah of Berar, situated in the centre of Hindos- 
tan, and did thereby strip the provinces subject to the 
government of Fort William of a considerable part of 
their established defence, and did thereby disobey the 
general instructions and positive orders of the Court 
of Directors, (given upon occasion of a crime of the 
same nature committed by the said Hastings,) and 
was guilty of a high crime and misdemeanor. 

That the said Warren Hastings, having taken the 
measurea hereinbefore described for supporting those 
of the Prefidency of Bombay, did, on the 23d of 

• 28tb Maj, 1782. 

t ISth Dec., 1775. 







March, 1778, "inyest the said Presidency with au- 
thority to form a uew alliance with Ragoba, and to 
engage with him in any scheme which they should 
deem expedient and safe for retrieving his affairs." 
That the said Hastings was then in possession of a 
latter from the Court of Directors, dated the 4th of 
July, 1777, contauiing a positive order to the Presi- 
dency of Bombay in the following words. " Though 
that treaty " (meaning the treaty of Poorunder) " is 
not, upon the whole, so agreeable to us as we could 
wish, still we are resolved strictly to adhere to it on 
our parts. You must therefore be particularly vigi- 
lant, while Ragoba is with you, to prevent him from 
forming any plan against what is called the ministe- 
rial party at Poonah ; and we hereby positively order 
you not to engage with him in any scheme whatever 
in retrieving his affairs, without the consent of the 
Governor-General and Council, or the Court of Direc- 
tors." That the said Ragoba neither did or could 
form any plan for his -estoration but what was end 
must be against the ministerial party at Poonah, who 
held and exercised the regency of that state in the in- 
fancy of the Peshwa ; and that, supposing him to have 
formed any other scheme, in conjunction with Bom- 
bay, for retrieving his affairs, the said Hastings, in 
giving a previous general authority to the Presiden- 
cy of Bombay to engage with Ragobu in any scheme 
for that purpose, without knowing what such scheme 
might be, and thereby relinquishing and transferring 
to the discretion of a subordinate government thrt 
superintendence and control over all measures tend- 
ing to create or provoke a war which the law had 
exclusively vested in the Governor-General and Coun- 
cil, was guilty of a high crime and misdemeanor. 


'«H ' 



1.1; ■ 

Tliat the said Warren Hastings, having first declared 
that the measures taken by him were for the support 
of the engagements made by the Presidency of Bom- 
bay in favor of Ragoba, did afterwards, when it ap- 
peared that those negotiations were entirely laid aside, 
declare that his apprehension of the consequence of 
a pretended intrigue between the Mahrattas and the 
French was the sole motive qf aU the late measures taken 
for the support of the Presidency of Bombay ; but that 
neither of the preceding declarations contained the 
true motives and objects of the said Hastings, whose 
real purpose, as it appeared soon after, was, to make 
use of the superiority of the British power in India to 
carry on offensive wars, and to pursue schemes of con- 
quest, impolitic and unjust in their design, ill-concert- 
ed in the execution, and which, as this House has 
resolved, have brought great calamities on India, and 
enormous expenses on the East India Company. 

That the said Warren Hastings, on the 22d of 
June, 1778, made the following declaration in Coun- 
cil. " Much less cin I agree, that, with such superior 
udvantagos as we possess over every power which can 
opp' se us, we should act merely on the defensive. On 
the contrary, if it be really true that the British arms 
and influence have suffered so severe a check in the 
Western world, it is more incumbent on those who 
are charged with the interests of Great Britain in the 
East to exert themselves for the retrieval of the national 
loss. We have the means in our power, and, if they 
are not frustra by our own dissensions, I trust that 
the event of this expedition will yield every advantage 
for the attainment of which it was undertaken.^' That, 
in pursuance of the principles avowed in the preced- 
ing declaration, the said Warren Hastings, on the 9th 

I {• 




of July, 1778, did propose and carry it in Council, 
that an embassy should be sent from Bengal to Moo- 
dajee Boosla, the Rajah of Berar, — falsely asserting 
that the said Rajah " was, by interest and inclination, 
likely to join in en alliance with the British govern- 
ment, and suggeiiing that two advantages might be 
offered to him as the inducements to it : first, the 
support of his pretensions to the sovereiofn power" 
(viz., of the Mahratta empire) ; " second, the recov- 
ery of the captures made on his dominions by Nizam 
AH." That the said Hastings, having already given 
full authority to the Presidency of Bombay to engage 
the British faith to Ragonaut Row to support him in 
his pretensions to the government or to the regency 
of the Mahratta empire, was guilty of a high crime 
and misdemeanor in proposing to engage the same 
British faith to support the pretensions of another 
competitor for the same object ; and that, in offering 
to assist the Rajah of Berar to recover the captures 
made on his dominions by the Nizam, the said Hast- 
ings did endeavor, as far as depended on him, to en- 
gage the British nation in a most uiiju&t and utter- 
ly unprovoked war against the said Nizam, between 
whom and the East India Company a treaty of peace 
.and friendship did then subsist, unviolated on his 
part, — notwithstanding the said Hastings well knew 
that it made part of the East India Company's funda- 
mental policy to support that prince against the Mah- 
rattas, and to consider him as one of the few remaining 
chiefs who were yet capable of coping with the Mahrat- 
tas, and that it was the Company's true interest to pre- 
serve a good understanding with him. That, by hold- 
ing out such offe-s to the Rajah of Berar, the said 
Hastings professed to hope that the Rajah would ar- 













', 'V, 

I > 

dently catch at the objects presented to h'.^ ambition; 
and although the said Hastings did about this time 
lay it down as a maxim that there i» always a greater 
advantage in receiving solicitations than in making ad- 
vances, he nevertheless declared to the said Rajah that 
in the whole of his conduct he had departed from the 
common line of policy, and had made advances whtre 
others in his situation would have waited for solicitation. 
That the said unjust and dangerous projects did not 
take effect, because the Rajah of Berar refused to join 
or be concerned therein ; yet so earnest was the said 
Hastings for the execution of those projects, that in 
a subsequent letter he daringly and treacherously 
assured the Rajah, " that, if he had accepted of the 
terms offered him by Colonel Goddard, and conclud- 
ed a treaty with the government of Bengal upon them, 
he should have held the obligation of it superior to 
that of any engagement formed by the government 
of Bombay, and should have thought it his duty to 
maintain it, &c., against every consideration even of 
the most valuable interests and safety of the English pos- 
sessions intrusted to his charge." That all the offers of 
the said Hastings were rejected with slight and con- 
tempt by the Rajah of Berar; but the same being 
discovered, and generally known throughout India, 
did fill the chief of the princes and states of India 
with a general suspicion and distrust of the ambitious 
designs and treacherous principles of the British gov- 
ernment, and with an universal hatred of the British 
nation. That the said princes and states were there- 
by so thoroughly convinced of the necessity of uititing 
amongst themselves to oppose a power which kept no 
fuith with any of them, and equally threatened them 
all, that, renouncing all former enmities against each 



other, they united in a common confederacy against 
the English, viz. : the Peshwa, as representative of the 
Maliratta state, and Moodajee Boosla, the Rajah of 
Berar, that is, the principal Hindoo powers of India, 
on one side ; and Hyder Ali, and the Nizam of the 
Deccau, that is, tlie principal Mahomedau powers of 
India, on the other : and that in consequence of this 
confederacy Hyder Ali invaded, overran, and ruined 
the Caruatic ; and that Moodajee Boosla, instead of 
ardently catchinff at the objects presented to his ambition 
by the said Hastings, sent an army to the frontiers of 
Bengal, — which army the said Warren Hastmgs was 
at length forced to buy off with twenty-six lacs of ru- 
pees, or 300,000^. sterling, after a series of negotia- 
tions with the Mabratta chiefs who commanded that 
army, founded aud conducted on principles so dishon- 
orable to the British name and character, that the Se- 
cret Committee of the House of Commons, by wliom 
the rest of the proceedings in that business were 
reported to the House, have upon due consideration 
thouyht it proper to leave out the letter of instructions to 
Mr. Anderson, viz., those given by the said Warren 
Hastings to the representative of the British govern- 
ment, and concerning which the said committee iiave 
reported in the following terms : " The schemes of 
policy by which the Governor-General seems to liave 
dictated the instructions he gave to Mr. Anderson " 
(tlie gentleman deputed) " will also appear in this 
document, as well respecting tlie particular succes- 
sion to the rauje, as also the mode of accommodating 
the demand of chout, tlie establishment of wliicli was 
apparently the groat aim of Moodajee's political ma- 
nceuvres, while the Governor-General's wish to de- 
feat it was avowedly more intent on tlie reinoval of a 







t \ 

nominal disgrace than on the anxiety or resolution to 
be freed from an expensive, if an unavoidable iucxun- 

That, while the said Warren Hastings was endeav- 
oring to persuade the Rajah of Berar to engage with 
him in a scheme to place the said Rajah at the head 
of the Mahratta empire, the Presidency of Bombay, 
by virtue of the powers specially vested in them for 
that purpose by the said Hastings, did really engage 
with Ragonaut Row, the other competitor for the 
same object, and sent a great part of their military 
force, established for the defence of Bombay, on an 
expedition with Ragonaut Row, to invade the domin- 
ions of the Peshwa, and to take Poonah, the capital 
thereof ; that this army, being surrounded and over- 
powered by the Mahrattas, was obliged to capitulate ; 
and then, through the moderation of the Mahrattas, 
was permitted to return quietly, but very dhgracefully, 
to Bombay. Tliat, supposing the said Warren Hast- 
ings could have been justified in abandoning the proj- 
ect of reinstating Ragonaut Row, which ho at first 
authorized and promised to support, and in preferring 
a scheme to place the Rajah of Berar at the head of 
the Maliratta empire, he was bound by his duty, as 
well as injustice to the Presidency of Bombay, to give 
that Presidency timely notice of such his intention, 
and to have restrained them positively from resum- 
ing their own project ; that, on tlie contrary, the said 
Warren Hustings did, on the 17th of August, 1778, 
again authorize tlie said Presidency " to assist Ragoba 
with a military force to conduct him to Poonah, and 
to estaijlish him in tlie regency there," and, so far 
from communicating his change of plan to Bombay, 
did keep it concealed from that Presidency, insomuch 




that, even so late as the 19th of February, 1779, 
"William Hornby, then Governor of Bombay, declared 
in Council his total ignorance of the schemes of the 
said Hastings in the following terms : " The schemes 
of the Governor-General and Council with regard to 
the Rajah of Berar being yet unknown to us, it is im- 
possible for us to found any measures on them ; yet 
I cannot help now observing, that, if, as has been 
conjectured, the gentlemen of that Presidency have 
entertained thoughts of restoring, in his person, the 
ancient Rajah government, tiie attempt seems like- 
ly to bj attended with no small difficulty." That, 
wliereas the said Warren Hastings did repeatedly 
affirm that it was his intention to support the plan 
formed by the Presidency of Bombay in favor of 
Ragoba, and did repeatedly authorize and encourage 
them to pursue it, he did nevertheless, at the same 
time, in his letters and declarations to the Pesfhwa, 
to the Nizam, and to the Rajali of Berar, falsely and 
perfidiously affirm, that it never wag nor i» designed by 
the English chiefs to give support to Ragonaut Row, — 
that he ( Hastings) had no idea of supporting Ragonaut 
Row, — and that the detaehment he had sent to Bombay 
was solely to awe the French, without the least design 
to assist Ragonaut Row. That, supposing it to have 
been the sole professed intention of the said Ilaf-tings, 
in sending an army across li.dia, to protect Bombay 
against a French invasion, even that pretence was 
false, and used only to cover the real design of the 
said Hastings, viz., to engage in projects of war and 
conquest with the Rajah of Berar. That on the 11th 
of October, 1778, he informed the said Rajah " tiiat 
the detachment would t^oon arrive in his territories, 
and depend on him [Moodajee Boosla] for its subse- 








quent operations " ; that on the 7th of December, 
1778, the said Hastings revoked the powers he had 
before given* to the Presidency of Bombay over tho 
detachment, declaring that the event of Colonel God- 
dard's negotiation with the Rajah of Berar was likely 
to cause a very speedy and essential change in the design 
and operations of the detachment; and that on the 4th 
of March, 1779, the said Hastings, immediately after 
receiving advice of the defeat of the Bombay army 
near Poonah, and when Bombay, if at any time, par- 
ticularly required to be protected against a French 
invasion, did declare in Council that he wished for the 
return of the detachment to Berar, and dreaded to hear 
of its proceeding to the Malabar coast : and therefore, 
if the said Hastings did not think that Bombay was 
in duuger of being attacked by the French, he was 
guilty of repeated falsehoods in aflBrming the contrary 
for the purpose of covering a criminal design ; or, if 
he thought that Bombay was immediately threatened 
with that danger, he then was guilty of treachery in 
ordering an army necessary on that supposition to the 
immediate defence of Bombay to hdt in Berar, to de- 
pend on the Rajah of Berar for its subsequent opera- 
tion!-, or on th^ eveni, of a negotiation with that prince, 
which, as the said Hastings declared, was likely to 
cause a very speedy and essential change in the design 
and operations of the detachment; and finally, in de- 
claring that he dreaded to hear of the said detach- 
ment\ proceeding to the Malabar coast, whither he 
ought to have ordered it to proceed without delay, 
if, as he has solemnly affirmed, it was true that he 
had been told by the highest authority that a powerful 
armament had been prepared in France, the first object 

* On the 15th of Novenber. 



of which wa$ an attack upon Bomhay, and that he 
knew with moral certainty thai all the powert of the 
adjacent continent were ready to join the invasion. 

That through the wholo of these transactions the 
said Warren Hastings has been guilty of continued 
falseliood, fraud, contradiction, and duplicity, highly 
dishonorable to the character of the British nation ; 
that, in consequence of the unjust and ill-concerted 
schemes of the said Hastings, the British arms, here- 
tofore respected in India, have suffered repeated dis- 
graces, and great calamities have been thereby brought 
upon India ; and that the said Warren Hastings, as 
well in exciting and promoting the late unprovoked 
and unjustifiable war against the Mahrattas, as in the 
conduct thereof, has been guilty of sundry high crimes 
and misdemeanors. 

That, by the definitive treaty of peace concluded 
with the Mahrattas at Poorunder, on the 1st of March, 
1776, the Mahrattas gave up all right and title to the 
island of Salsette, unjustly taken from them by the 
Presidency of Bombay ; did also give up to the Eng- 
lish Company forever all right and title to their en- 
tire sliares of the city and purgunnah of Baroach ; did 
also give forevjr to the English Company a country 
of three lacs of rupees revenue, near to Baroach ; and 
did also agree to pay to the Company twelve lacs of 
rupees, in part of the expenses of the English army: 
and that the terms of the said treaty were honorable 
and adi'antageouf to the India Company.* 

That Warren Hasting?, having broken the said 
treaty, and forced the Mahrattas into another war by 
a repeated invasion of their country, and having con- 
ducted that war in the manner hereinbefore described, 

• Resolution of the Honse of Commons, 28th May, 1782. 





p ■ti 





Nf '^r 




did, on the 17th of May, 1782, by tho agoiicv of Mr. 
David Anderson, conclude another treaty of perpetual 
fricndKliip and alliance with tho Mahrattas, by wliich 
tho said Hastings agreed to deliver up to them all 
the countries, places, cities, and forts, particularly the 
island of Bassein, (taken from the Peshwa during the 
war,) and to relinquish all claim to tho country of 
three lacs of rupees ceded to tho Company by the 
treaty of Poorunder ; that the said Warren Hastings 
did also at the said time, by a private and separate 
agreement, deliver up to Mahdajoo Sindia the whole 
of the city of Baroach, — that is, not only the share 
in tho said city which the India Company acquired by 
the treaty of Poorunder, but the other share thereof 
which the India Company possessed for several years 
before that treaty ; and that among tl;o reasons as- 
signed by Mr. David Anderson for totally Ftripping 
the Presidency of Bombay of all their possessions on 
the Malabar coast, he has declared, " that, from the 
general tenor of the rest of tlie treaty, the settlement 
of Bombay would be in future put on such a footing 
that it might well become a question whether the pos- 
session of an inconsiderable territory without forts 
would not be attended with more loss than advan- 
tage, as it must necessarily occasion considerable 
expciiso, must require troops for its defence, and 
nii|;ht probably in the end lead, as Sindia appre- 
hended, to a renewal of war." 

That tho said Warren Hastings, having in tliis 
manner put an end to a war commenced by liira 
witliout provocation, and continued by him without 
necessity, and having for that purpose made so many 
i-acrifices to the Mahrattas in points of essential inter- 
est to the India Company, did consent and agree to 





other articles utterly dishonorable to the British name 
and character, having sacrifiocd or abandoned c eiy 
one of the native princes wlio by M» solicitations and 
promises had been engaged to take part witli us in 
tlio war, — and that he did so witliout necessity : 
since it appears tliut Sindia, the Mahratta chief who 
concluded the treaty, in every part of his conduct man- 
ifegttl a hearty desire of eitabliishing a peace with us ; 
and that this was the disposition of all the parties iu 
the Mahratta confederacy, who were only kept togetli- 
er by a general dread of their common enemy, tlio 
English, iind who only waited for a cessation of liostili- 
ties with us to return to tlieir habitual and permanent 
enmity against each other. That the Governor-Gen- 
eral and Council, in their letter of Slst August, 1781, 
made the following declaration to the Court of Direc- 
tors. " The Mahrattajj have demanded the sacrifice of 
the person of Ragonaut Row, tlie surrender of the fort 
and territories of Ahmedubad, and of the fortress of 
Gualior, which are not ours to give, and which we could 
not wrest from the proprietors without the ijreatest vio- 
lation of public faith. No state of affairs, in our opin- 
ions, could warrant our acquiescence to such requisi- 
tion ; and we are morally certain, that, had we yielded 
to them, such a consciousness of the state of our af- 
fairs would have been implied as would have produced 
an effect the very reverse from that for which it was 
intended, by raising tlie presumption of the enemy to 
exact yet more ignominious terms, or perhaps their 
refusal to accept of any ; nor, in our opinion, would 
they have failed to excite in others the same belief, 
and the consequent decision of all parties against us, 
as the natural consequences of our decline." That 
the said Hastings himself, in his instructions to Mr. 

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David Anderson, after authorizing him to restore all 
that we had conquered during the war, expressly 
*' excepted Ahmedabad, and the territory conquered 
for Futty Sing Gwicowar." That, nevertheless, the 
said Hastings, in the peace concluded by him, has 
yielded to every one of the conditions reprobated in 
the preceding declarations as ignaminioui and incom- 
patible with public faith. 

That the said Warren Hastings did abandon the 
Ranna of Gohud in the manner already charged; and 
that the said Ranna has not only lost the fort of 
Gualior, but all his own country, and is himself a pris- 
oner. That the said Hastings did not interpose to ob- 
tain any terms in favor of the Nabob of Bopaul, who 
was with great reason desirous of concealing from the 
Mahrattaa the attachment he had home to the English 
government:* the said Nabob having a just dread of 
the danger of being exposed to the resentment of the 
Mahrattas, and no dependence on the faith and pro- 
tection of the English. That by the ninth article 
of the treaty with Futty Sing it was stipulated, that, 
when a negotiation for peace should take place, his 
interest should be primarily considered ; and that 
Mr. David Anderson, the minister and representative 
of the Governor-General and Council, did declare to 
Sindia, that it was indispensably incumbent on us 
to support Futty Sing's rights: that, nevertheless, 
every acquisition made for or by the said Futty Sing 
during the war, particularly the fort and territories of 
Ahmedabad, were given up by the said Hastings ; that 
Futty Sing was replaced under the subjection of the 
Feshwa, (whose resentment ho had provoked by tak- 
ing part with us in the war,) and under an obligation 
• Anderson's letter of 26th January, 1782. 



to pay a tribute, not specified, to the Peshwa, and to 
perform such services and to be subject to such obe- 
dience as had long been established and customary ; and 
that, no limit being fixed to such tribute or services, 
the said Futty Sing has been left wholly at the mercy 
of the Mahrattas. 

That, with respect to Ragoba, the said Hastings, in 
his instructions to Mr. Anderson, dated 4th of No- 
vember, 1781, contented himself with saying, " "We 
cannot totally abandon the interests of Bagonaut 
Row. Endeavor to obtain for him an adequate pro- 
vision." That Mr. Anderson declared to Mahdajee 
Sindia,* " that, as we had given Ragoba protection 
as an independent prince, and not brought him in- 
to our settlement as a prisoner, we could not in 
honor pretend to impose the smallest restraint on his 
will, and he must be at liberty to go wherever he 
pleased; that it must rest with Sindia himself to 
prevail on him to reside in his country: all that 
we could do was to agree, after a reasonable time, 
to withdraw our protection from him, and not to in- 
sist on the payment of the stipend to him, as Sindia 
had proposed, unless on the condition of his resid- 
ing in some part of Sindia's territories." 

That, notwithstanding all the preceding declara- 
tions, and in violation of the public faith repeatedly 
pledged to Ragoba, he was totally abandoned by the 
said Hastings in the treaty, no provision whatever 
being made even for his subsistence, but on a con- 
dition to which he could not submit without the 
certain loss of his liberty and probable hazard of 
his life, namely, that he should voluntarily and of his 
own accord repair to Sindia, and quietly reside with 


• Anderson's letter of 24th February, 1782. 







him. That such treacherous desertion of the said 
Ragoba is not capable of being justified by any plea 
of necessity : but that in fact no such necessity ex- 
isted ; since it appears that the Nizam, who of all the 
contracting parties in the confederacy was person- 
ally most hostile to Ragoba, did himself propose that 
Ragoba might have an option given him of residmg 
within the Company's territories. 

That the plan of negotiating a peace with the 
Mahrattas by application to Sindia, and through 
his mediation, was earnestly recommended to the 
said Hastings by the Presidency of Bombay so early 
as in February, 1779, who stated clearly to him the 
reasons why such application ought to be made to 
Sindia in preference to any other of the Mahratta 
chiefs, and why it would probably be successful; 
the truth and justice of which reasons were fully 
evinced in the issue, when the said Hastings, after 
incurring, by two years' delay, all the losses and 
distresses of a calamitous war, did actually pursue 
that very plan with much less effect or advantage 
than might have been obtained at the time the 
advice was given. That he neglected the advice 
of the Presidency of Bombay, and retarded the 
peace, as well as made its conditions worse, from 
an obstinate attachment to his project of an alli- 
ance offensive and defensive with the Rajah of Be- 
rar, the object of which was rather a new war than 
a termination of the war then existing against the 


That the said Hastings did further embarrass and 
retard the conclusion of a peace by employing dif- 
ferent ministers at the courts of the several con- 
federate powers, whom he severally empowered to 




treat and negotiate a peace. That these ministers, 
not acting in concert, not knowing the extent of 
each other's commissions, and having no instruc- 
tions to communicate their respective proceedings 
to each other, did in effect counteract their several 
negotiations. That this want of concert and of 
simplicity, and the mystery and intricacy in the 
mode of conducting the negotiation on our part, 
was complained of by our ministers as embarrass- 
ing and disconcerting to us, while it was advanta- 
geous to the adverse party, who were thereby fur- 
nished with opportunity and pretence for delay, 
when it suited their purpose, and enabled to play 
off one set of negotiators against another; that it 
also created jealousy and distrust in the various 
contending parties, with whom we were treating at 
the same time, and to whom we were obliged to 
make contradictory professions, while it betrayed 
and exposed to them all our own eagerness and 
impatience for peace, raising thereby the general 
claims and pretensions of the enemy. That, while 
Dalhousie Watherston, Esquire, was treating at 
Poonah, nd David Anderson, Esquire, in Sindia's 
camp, with separate powers applied to the same ob- 
ject, the minister at Poonah informed the said Wa- 
therston, that he had received proposals for peace 
from the Nabob of Arcot with the approbation of Sir 
Eyre Coote ; that he had returned other proposals 
to the said Nabob of Arcot, who had assured him, 
the minister, that those proposals would be acceded to, 
and that Mr. Macpherson would set out for Bengal, af' 
ter which orders should be immediately dispatched from 
the Honorable the Governor- General and Council to th« 
effect he wished; that the said Nabob "had prom- 






ised to obtain and forward to him the expected 
orders from Bengal in fifteen days, and chat he was 
therefore eve./ instant in expectation of their arri- 
val,— and observed, that, when General Goddard 
proposed to send a confidential person to Poonah, 
he conceived that those orders must have actually 
reached him": that therefore the treaty formally 
concluded by David Anderson was in effect and 
fubstance the same with that offered and in reality 
concluded by the Nabob of Arcot, with the excep- 
tiou only of Salsette, which the Nabob of Arcot had 
agreed to restore to the Mahrattas. 

That the intention of the said Warren Hastings, 
in pressing for a peace with the Mahrattas on terms 
so dishonorable and by measures so rash and ill- 
concerted, was not to restore and establish a genera' 
peace throughout India, but to engage the India 
Company in a new war against Hyder Ali, and 
to make the Mahrattas parties therein. That the 
eagerness and passion with which the said Hastings 
pursued this object laid him open to the Mahrattas, 
who depended thereon for obtaining whatever they 
should demand from us. That, in order to carry 
the point oi' an offe.isive alliance against Hyder Ah, 
the said Hastings exposed thf negotiation for peace 
with the Mahrattas to many difficulties and delays. 
That the Mahrattas were bound by a clear and re- 
cent engagement, which Hyder had never violated 
in any article, to make no peace with us which 
should not include him ; that they pleaded the sa- 
cred nature of this obligation in answer to all our 
requisitions on thi. head, while the said Hastings, 
still importunate for his favorite point, suggested 
to them various means of reconciling a substantial 




breach of their engagement with a formal observance 
of it, and taught them how they might at once bo 
parties in a peace with Hyder Ali and in an of- 
fensive alliance for immediate hostility against him. 
That these lessons of public duplicity and artifice, 
and these devices of ostensible faith and real treach- 
ery, could have no effect but to degrade the national 
character, and to inspire the Mahrattas themselves, 
with whom we were in treaty, with a distrust in our 
sincerity and good faith. That the object of this 
fraudulent policy (viz., the utter destruction of Hy- 
der Ali, and a partition of his dominions) was nei- 
tlier wise in itself, or authorized by the orders and 
instructions of the Company to their servants ; that 
it was incompatible with the treaty of peace, in 
which Hyder Ali was included, and contrary to the 
repeated and best-understood injunctions of the Com- 
pany, — being, in the first place, a bargain for a 
new wai", and, in the next, aiming at an extension 
of our territory by conquest. That the best and 
soundest political opinions on the relations of these 
states have always represented our great security 
against the power of the Mahrattas to depend on 
its being balanced by that of Hyder Ali; and the 
Mysore country is so placed as a barrier between 
the Carnatic and the Mahrattas as to make it our 
interest rather to strengthen and repair that barrier 
than to level and destroy it. That the said treaty 
of partition does express itself to be eventual with 
regard to the making and keeping of peace; but 
through the whole course of the said Hastings's pro- 
ceeding he did endeavor to prevent any peace with 
the Sultan or Nabob of Mysore, T"ppoo Sahib, and 
did for a long time endeavor to frustrate all the 











methods which coxild have rendered the said treaty 
of conquest and partition wholly unnecessary. 

That the Mahrattas having taken no effectual step 
to oblige Hyder Ali to make good the conditions for 
which they had engaged in his behalf, and the war 
continuing to be carried on in the Carnatic by Tip- 
poo Sultan, son and successor of Hyder Ali, the 
Presidency of Fort St. George undertook, upon their 
own authority, to open a negotiation with the said Tip- 
poo : which measure, though indispensably necessary, 
the said Hastings utterly disapproved and discounte- 
nanced, expressly denying that there was any ground 
or motive for entering into any direct or separate 
treaty with Tippoo, and not consenting to or author- 
izing any negotiation for such treaty, until after a 
cessation of hostiliiles had been brought about with 
him by the Presideni./ of Fort St. George, in August, 
1783, and the ministers of Tippoo had been received 
and treated with by that Presidency, and commission- 
ers, in return, actually sent by the said Presidency to 
the court of Poonah : which late and reluctant con- 
sent and authority were extorted from him, the said 
Hastings, in consequence of the acknowledgment of 
his agent at tin court of Mahdajee Siudia, upon whom 
the said Warren Hastings had depended for enforc- 
ing the clauses of the Mahratta treaty, of the preca- 
riousness of such dependence, and of the necessity of 
that direct and separate treaty with Tippoo, so long 
and so lately reprobated by the said Warren Hastings, 
notwithstanding the information and entreaties of the 
Presidency of Fort St. George, as well as the known 
distresses and critical situation of the Company's af- 
fairs. That, though the said Warren Hastings did at 
length give instructions for negotiating and making 



peace with Tippoo, expresf^ly adding, that those in- 
structions extended to all tlie points wliicli occurred 
to Aim or them as capable of being agitated or gained 
upon the occasion, — though tlie said instiuctions were 
sent after tlie said commissioners by the Presidency 
of Port St. George, with directions to obey them, — 
though not only the said instructions were obeyed, 
but advantages gained which did not occur to the 
said Warren Hastings, — though th<j said peace 
formed a contrast with the Mabratta peace, iu nei- 
ther ceding any territory . ■ 'ty the Company 
before the war, or deliverirr . .ependant or ally 
to the vengeance of his ad\ i ut providing for 
the restoration of all the cnu that b ' been taken 
from the Company and their allies, — tnough the Su- 
preme Council of Calcutta, forming the legal govern- 
ment of Bengal in the absence of the said Warren 
Hastings, ratified the said treaty, — yet the said War- 
ren Hastings, then absent from the seat of govern- 
ment, and out of the province of Bengal, and forming 
no legal or integral part of the government during 
Buch absence, did, after such ratification, usurp the 
power of acting as a part of such government (as if 
actually sitting in Council with the other members of 
the same) in the consideration and unqualified cen- 
sure of the terms of the said peace. 

That the Nabob of Arcot, with whom the said Hast- 
ings did keep up an unwarrantable clandestine cor- 
respondence, without any communication with the 
Presidency of Madras, wrote a letter of complaint, 
dated the 27th of March, 1784, against the Presi- 
dency of that place, without any communication 
thereof to the said Presidency, the said complaint 
being addressed to the said Warren Hastings, the 










: 11 

M *. 

substance of which complaint was, that he, tV ^ Na- 
bob, iiad not been made a party to the late treaty ; 
and although his interest had been sufficiently pro- 
vided for in the said treaty, the said Warren Hast- 
ings did sign a declaration, on the 23d of May, at 
Luclcnow, forming the basis of a new article, and 
making a new party to the treaty, after it had been 
by all parties (the Supreme Council of Calcutta in- 
cluded) completed and ratified, and did transmit 
the said new stipulation to the Presidency at Cal- 
cutu, solely for the purposes and at the instigation 
of the Nabob of Arcot ; and the said declaration was 
made without any previous communication with the 
Presidency aforesaid, and in consequence thereof 
orders were sent by the Council at Calcutta to the 
Presidency of Fort St. George, under the severest 
threat* m case of disobedience : which orders, whatev- 
er were their purport, would, as an undue assump- 
tion of and participation in the government, from 
which he was absent, become a high misdemeanor ; 
but, being to tlie purport of opening the said treaty 
after its solemn ratification, and proposing a new 
clause and a new party to the same, was ul^o an ag- 
gravation of such misdemeanor, as it tended to con- 
vey to the Indian powers an idea of the unsteadi- 
ness of the councils and determinations of the British 
government, and to take away all reliance on its en- 
gagements, and as, above all, it exposed the auairs of 
the nation and the Company to the hazard of seeing 
renewed all the calamities of war, from whence by 
the conclusion of the treaty they had emerged, and 
upon a pretence so weak as that of proposing the Na- 
bob of Arcot to be a party to the same, — though he 
had not been made a party by the said Warren Hast- 



ings in the Mahratta treaty, which professed to bo for 
the relief of the Caruatic, — though ho was not a 
party to the former treaty with Hyiier, also relativ© 
to the Caruatic, — though it was not certain, if the 
treaty were ouco opened, and that even Tippoo should 
tlien consent to that Nabob's being a party, whether 
he, tlio said Nabob, would agree to the clauses of the 
same, and consequently whether the treaty, once 
opened, could afterwards be concluded : an uncer- 
tainty of which ho, the said T "ugs, should have 
learned to J aware, having aire- / once been disap- 
pointed by the said Nabob's refusing to accede to a 
treaty which he, the said Warren Hastings, made for 
him with the Dutcli, about a year before. 

That the said Warren Hastings, — having broken a 
solemn and honorable treaty of peace by an unjust 
and unprovoked war, — having neglected to conclude 
that war when he might have done it without loss of 
honor to the nation, — having plotted and contrived, 
as far as depended on him, to engage the Indis Com- 
pany in another war as soon as tliu I'ormer should be 
concluded, — and having at last put an oud to a most 
unjust war against the Mahrattas by a most ignomin- 
ious peace with them, in which he sacrificed objects 
essential to the interests, and submitted to conditions 
utterly incompatible with the honor of this nation, 
and witli his own declared sense of tne dishonorable 
nature of those conditions, — and having endeavored 
to open anew the treaty concluded \k ith Tippoo Sul- 
tan through the means of the Presidency of Fort 
St. George, upon principles of justice and lionor, and 
which established peace in India, and thereby expos- 
ing the British possessions there to the renewal of 
the dangers and calamities of war, — has by these 




1 1 






Nveral acts been guilt/ ot "udry high crimes and 



That, by an act of the 18th year of Lis present 
Majest<', intituled, ''An act for establishing certain 
regulations for the better management of tlie affairs 
of the East India Company, as well in India as in Eu- 
rope," "the Governor-General and Council are re- 
quired and directed to pay due obedience tc all such 
orders as they shall receive from the Court of Direc- 
tors of the said United Company, and to correspond 
from time to time, and constantly and diligently 
transmit to tiie said Court an exact particular of all 
advices or intelligence and of all transactions and 
matters whatsoever that shall come to their )si\r^' 
edge, relating to the government, commerce, r^.o- 
nues, or interest of the said United Company." 

Tliat, in consequence of the above-recited act, the 
Court of Directors, in tbjir general instructions of 
the 20th March, 1774, to the Governor-General and 
Council, did direct, " that tlie correspondence with 
tlie princes or country powers in India should be 
carried on through the Governor-General only; but 
that all letters to bo sent by him should be first ap- 
proved in Council ; and that he should lay before the 
Council, at tlieir next meeting, all letters received by 
him in the course of such correspondence, for their 

And the Governor-General and Council were there- 
in further ordered, " that, in transacting the business 
of their department, they should enter with the ut- 
most perspicuity and exactness all *' 'r proceedings 




whatsoeror, and all diHscnts, if 8uch should at any 
time bo made by any mumber of their board, togt-tlier 
with all letters sent or received in the courtjo of their 
corrcspcidence ; and that broiien sets of such pro 
ceediii)?s, to tlio latest |M>nod possible, bo transmitted 
to them [the Court of Directors], a complete set at 
the end of every year, and a duplicate by tliu next 

That, in defiance of the said orders, and in broach 
of tlie above-recited act of Parliament, the said War- 
ren Hastin<;s has, in sundry instances, concealed 
from his Council the correspondence carried on be- 
tween liim and the princes or country powers in In- 
dia, and neglected to cnmmunicate tlie advices and 
intelligence lie from time to time received from the 
Britisli Residents at the different courts in India to 
the otliur members of the government, and, witiiout 
their knowledge, counsel, or participation, has dis- 
patched orders on matters of tlie utmost consequence 
to the interests of the Company. 

That, moreover, ilie said Warren Hastings, for the 
purpose of covering his own improper and dangerous 
practices from his employers, lias withheld from the 
Court of Directors, upon sninlry occasions, co{)ies of 
the proceedings had, and the correspondence carried 
on by him in his official capacity as Governo .ler- 
al, whereby the Court of Directors have been k^,t in 
ignorance of niatters which it iiighly imported them 
to know, and the affairs of the Company have been 
exposed to much inconvenience and injury. 

That, in all such concealments and acts done or 
ordered withotit the consent and authority of the Su- 
preme Council, the said Warren Hastings has Iteeu 
guilty of high crimes and misdemeanors. 

.a (■• 

I : 









'I ' 

. ■• 

- 1 


xxn.— FTzooLA khIn. 



I. That the Nabob Pyzoola Khan, who now holds 
of the Vizier the territory of Rampoor, Shahabad, and 
certain other districts dependent thereon, in the coun- 
try of the Rohillas, is the second son of a prince re- 
nowned in the history of Hindostan under the name 
of Ali Mohammed Khfin, some time sovereign of all 
that part of Rohilcund which is particularly distin- 
guished by the appellation of the Kutteehr. 

II. That, after the death of Aii Mohammed afore- 
said, as Fyzoola Khftn, together with his elder brother, 
was then a prisoner of war at a place called Herat, 
'* the Rohilla chiefs took possession of the ancient es- 
tates " of the captive princes ; and the Nabob Pyzoo- 
la Khfiu was from necessity compelled to waive his 
hereditary rights for the inconsiderable districts of 
Rampoor and Shahabad, then estimated to produce 
from six to eight lacs of annual revenue. 

III. That in 1774, on the invasion of Rohilcund by 
the united armies of the Vizier Sujah ul Dowlah and 
the Company, the Nabob Fyzoola Khan, " with some 
of his people, was present at the decisive battle of St. 
George," where Hafiz Rhamet, the great leader of the 
Rohillas, and many others of their principal chiefs 
were slain ; but, escaping from the slaughter, Fyzoola 
Khan " made his retreat good towards the mountains, 
with all his treasure." He there collected the scat- 






tered remains of his countrymen ; and as he was the 
eldest surviving son of Ali Mohammed Kh&n, as, too, 
the most powerful obstacle to his pretensions was now 
removed by the death of Hafiz, he seems at length to 
have been generally acknowledged by his natural sub- 
jects the undoubted heir of his father's authority. 

IV. That, "regarding the sacred sincerity and 
friendship of the English, whose goodness and celeb- 
rity is everywhere known, who dispossess no one" the 
Nabob Fyzoola Khkn made early overtures for peace 
to Colonel Alexander Champion, commander-in-chief 
of the Company's forces in Bengal : that he did pro- 
pose to the said Colonel Alexander Champion, in 
three letters, received on the 14th, 24th, and 27th of 
May, to put himself under the protection either of 
the Company, or of the Vizier, through the mediation 
and with the guaranty of the Company ; and that he 
did offer, " whatever was conferred upon him, to pay 
as much without damage or deficiency as any other 
person would agree to do " : stating, T,t the same time, 
his condition and pretensions hereinbefore recited as 
facts " evident as the sun " ; and appealing, in a for- 
cible and awful manner, to the generosity and magna- 
nimity of this nation, " by whose means he hoped in 
God that he should receive justice " ; and as " the per- 
son who designed the war was no more," as " in that 
he was himself guiltless," and as " he had never act- 
ed in such a manner as for the Vizier to have taken 
hatred to his heart against him, that he might be 
reinstated in his ancient possessions, the country of 
his father." 



V. That on the last of the three dates above men- 




tioned, that is to say, on the 27th of May, the Nabob 
Fyzoola KhAn did also send to the commander-in- 
chief a vakeel, or ambassador, who was authorized 
on the part of him, the Nabob Fyzoola Khtln, his 
master, to make a specific offer of three proposi- 
tions ; and that by one of the said propositions " an 
annual increase of near 400,000?. would have ac- 
crued to the revenues of our ally, and the immedi- 
ate acquisition of above 300,000Z. to the Company, 
for their influence in eflecting an accommodation 
perfectly consistent with their engagements to the 
Vizier," and strictly consonant to the demands of 

VI. That, so great was the confidence of the 
Nabob Fyzoola KhSn in the just, humane, and lib- 
eral feelings of Englishmen, as to "lull him into 
an inactivity" of the most essential detriment to 
his interests : since, " in the hopes which he enter- 
tained from the interposition of our government," 
he declined the invitation of the Mogul to join the 
arms of his Majesty and the Mahrattas, "refused 
any connection with the Seiks," and did even neg- 
lect to take the obvious precaution of crossing the 
Ganges, as lie had originally intended, while the 
river was yet fordable, — a movement that would 
have enabled him certainly to baffle all pursuit, and 
probably " to keep the Vizier in a state of disquie- 
tude for the remainder of his life." 

VII. That the commander-in-chief. Colonel Alex- 
ander Champion aforesaid, " thought nothing could 
be more honorable to this nation than the support 
of so exalted a character; and whilst it could be 



done on terms so advantageous, supposed it very 
unlikely that the vakeel's proposition should be re- 
ceived with indifference " ; that he did accordingly 
refer it to the administration through Warren Hast- 
ings, Esquire, then Governor of Fort William and 
President of Bengal ; and ho did at the same time 
inclose to the said Warren Hastings a letter from 
the Nabob Fyzoola Khan to the said Hastings, — 
which letter does not appear, but must be supposed 
to have been of the same tenor with those before 
cited to the commander-in-chief, — of which also 
copies were sent to the said Hastings by the com- 
mander-in-chief; and he, the commander-in-chief 
aforesaid, after urging to the said Hastings sundry 
good and cogent arguments of policy and prudence 
in favor of the Nabob Fyzoola Khan, did conclude 
by "wishing for nothing so much as for the adop- 
tion of some measure that might strike all the pow- 
ers of the East with admiration of our justice, in 
contrast to the conduct of the Vizier." 

Vni. That, in answer to such laudable wish of 
the said commander-in-chief, the President, Warren 
Hastings, preferring his own prohibited plans of 
extended dominion to the mild, equitable, and wise 
policy inculcated in the standing orders of his su- 
periors, and now enforced by the recommendation 
of the commander-in-chief, did instruct and "de- 
sire" him, the said commander-in-chief, "instead 
of soliciting the Vizier to relinquish his conquest 
to Fyzoola Khln, to discourage it as much as was 
in his power " ; although the said Hastings did not 
once e- press, or even intimate, any doubt whatever 
of the Nabob Fyzoola Khin's innocence as to the 

' I 

I i 





origin of the war, or of his hereditary right to the 
territories which he claimed, but to the said pleas 
of the Nabob Fyzoola Klian, as well as to the ar- 
guments both of policy and justice advanced by the 
commander-in-chief, he, the said Hastir-pjs, did solely 
oppose certain speculative objects of imagined ex- 
pediency, summing up his decided rejection of the 
proposals made by the Nabob Fyzoola Kh&n in the 
following remarkable words. " "With respect to Fy- 
zoola Khan, he appears not to merit our consideration. 
The petty sovereign of a country estimated at six or 
eight lacs ought not for a momevt to prove an imped- 
iment to any of our measures, or to affect the consist- 
ency of our conduct." 

IX. That, in the aforesaid violent and arbitrary 
position, the said Warren Hastings did avow it to 
be a public principle of his government, that no 
right, however manifest, and no innocence, however 
unimpeached, could entitle the weak to our pro- 
tection against others, or save them from our own 
active endeavors for their ojfpression, and even ex- 
tirpation, should they interfere with our notions of 
political expediency; and that such a principle is 
highly derogatory to the justice and honor of the 
English name, and fundamentally injurious to our 
interests, inasmuch as it hath an immediate ten- 
dency to excite distrust, jealousy, fear, and hatred 
against us among all the subordinate potentates of 

X. That, in prosecution of the said despotic 
principle, the President, Warren Hastings aforesaid, 
did persist to obstruct, as far as in him lay, every 

\ *''* 



advance towards an accommodation between the 
Vizier Sujah iil Dowlah and the Nabob Fyzoola 
Khan ; and particularly on the 10th of September, 
only eight days after the said Hastings, in conjunc- 
tion with the other members of the Select Committee 
of Bengal, had publicly testified his satisfaction in 
the prospect of an accommodation, and had hoped 
that " his Excellency [the Vizier] would be disposed 
to conciliate the affections [of the Rohillas] to his 
government by acceding to lenient terms," he, the 
said Hastings, did nevertheless write, and without 
the consent or knowledge of his colleagues did pri- 
vately dispatch, a certain answer to a letter of the 
commander-in-chief, in which answer the said Hast- 
ings did express other contradictory hopes, namely, 
that the commander-in-chief had resolved on prose- 
cuting the war to a final issue, — "because" (as the 
said Hastings explains himself) " it appears very 
plainly that Fyzoola Chan and his adherents lay 
at your mercy, because I apprehend much inconven- 
iency from delays, and because / am morally cer- 
tain that no good tvill be gained by negotiating " : 
thereby artfully suggesting his wishes of what might 
be, in his hopes of what had been, resolved ; and 
plainly, though indirectly, instigating the command- 
er-in-cliief to much effiisio'' of blood in an immedi- 
ate attack on the Rohillas, posted as they were " in 
a very strong situation," and " combating for all." 

XI. That the said Hastings, "n the answer afore- 
said, did further endeavor to inflame the commander- 
in-chief against the ''Tabob Fyzoola Klian, by repre- 
senting the said Nabob " as highly presuming, inso- 
lent, and evasive " ; and knowing the distrust which 








the Nabob Fyzoola Khan entertained of the Vizier, 
the said Hastings did " expressly desire it should be 
left wholly to the Vizier to treat with the enemy by 
his own agents and in his own manner" — though he, 
the said Hastings, " by no means wished the Vizier 
to lose time by seeking an accommodation, since it 
would be more eflfectual, more decisive, and more 
consistent with his dignity, indeed with his honor, which 
he has already pledged, to abide by his first offers, to 
dictate the conditions of peace, and to admit only 
an acceptance without reservation, or a clear refusal, 
from his adversary": thereby affecting to hold up, 
in opposition to and in exclusion of the substantial 
claims of justice, certain ideal obligations of dignity 
and honor, — that is to say, the gratification of pride, 
and the observance of an arrogant determination once 

Xn. That, although the said answer did not reach 
the commander-in-chief until peace was actually con- 
cluded, and although the dangerous consequences to 
be apprehended from the said answer were thereby 
prevented, yet, by the sentiments contained in the 
said answer, Warren Hastings, Esquire, did strongly 
evince his ultimate adherence to all the former vio- 
lent and unjust principles of his conduct towards the 
Nabob Fyzoola KhRn, which principles were disgrace- 
ful to the character and injurious to the interests of 
this nation ; and that the said Warren Hastings did 
thereby, in a particular manner, exclude himself from 
any share of credit for " the honorable period put to 
the Rohilla war, which has in some degree done awa 
the reproach so wantonly brought on the English 




PART n. 


I. That, notwithstanding the culpable and crimi- 
nal reluctance of the President, Hastings, hereinbe- 
fore recited, a treaty of peace and friendship between 
the Vizier Sujah ul Dowlah and the Nabob Fyzoola 
Kh§,n was finally signed and sealed on the Ttli Octo- 
ber, 1774, at a place called Lall-Dang, in the pres- 
ence and with the attestation of the British command- 
er-in-chief, Colonel Alexander Champion aforesaid; 
and that for the said treaty the Nabob Fyzoola Kh&n 
agreed to pay, and did actually pay, the valuable con- 
sideration of half his treasure, to the amount of fifteen 
lacs of rupee-), or 150,000^. sterling, and upwards. 

II. That by the said treaty the Nabob Fyzoola 
Khln was established in the quiet possession of Ram- 
poor, Shahabad, and " some other districts dependent 
thereon," subject to certain conditions, of which the 
more important were as follow. 

"That Fyzoola Khan should retain in his service 
five thousand troops, and not a single man more. 

"That, with whomsoever the Yhier should make 
war, Fyzoola Khan should send ttvo or three thousand 
men, according to his ability, to join the forces of the 

" And that, if the Vizier should march in person, 
Fyzoola Khan should himself accompany him with 
his troops." 

ni. That from the terms of the treaty above re- 
cited it doth plainly, positively, and indisputably ap- 







pear that the Nabob Fyzoola Khan, in case of war, 
was not bound to furnish more than three thousand 
men under any construction, unless the Vizier should 
march in person. 

IV. That the Nabob Fyzoola Khln was not posi- 
tively bound to furnish so many as three thousand 
men, but an indefinite number, not more than three 
and not less than two thousand ; that of the precise 
number within such limitations the ability o*' Fyzoola 
Khan, and not the discretion of the Vizier, was to be 
the standard ; and that such ability could only mean 
that which was equitably consistent not only with the 
external defence of his jaghire, but with the internal 
good management thereof, both as to its pohce and 

V. That, even in case the Vizier should march in 
person, it might be reasonably doubted whether the 
personal service of the Nabob Fyzoola Khan "with 
his troops" must be understood to be with all his 
troops, or only with the number before stipulated, 
not more than three and not less than two thousand 
men ; and that the latter is the interpretation finally 
adopted by Warren Hastings aforesaid, and the Coun- 
cil of Bengal, who, in a letter to the Court of Direc 
tors, dated AprU 5th, 1783, represent the clauses of 
the treaty relative to the stipulated aid as meaning 
simply that Fyzoola Khan " should send two or three 
thousand men to join the Vizier's forces, or attend in 
person in case it should be requisite." 

VI. That from the aforesaid terms of the treaty it 
doth not specifically appear of what the stipulated aid 



should consist, whether of horse or foot, or \n what 
proportion of botli ; but that it is the recorded opinion, 
maturely f 'rmed by the said Hastings and his Coun- 
cil, in January, 1783, that even " a single horseman 
included in the aid which Fyzoola Khan might fur- 
nish would prove a literal compliance with the stipu- 

VII. That, in the event of any doubt fairly aris- 
ing from the terms of the treaty, the Nabob Fyzoola 
Khan, in consideration of his hereditary right to the 
whole country, and the price by him actually paid for 
the said treaty was in equity entitled to the most fa- 
vorable construction. 

VIII. That, from the attestation of Colonel Cham- 
pion aforesaid, the government of Calcutta acquired 
the same riglit to interpose with the Vizier for the 
protection of the Nabob Fyzoola Khun as they, the 
said government, had before claimed from a similar 
attestation of Sir Robert Barker to assist the Vizier 
in extirpating the whole nation of the said Fyzoola 
Khan, — more especially as in the case of Sir Robert 
Barker it was contrary to the remonstrances of the 
then admi.istration, and the furthest from the inten- 
tions of the said Barker himself, that his attestation 
should involve the Company, but the attestation of 
Colonel Champion was authorized by all the powers 
of the government, as a " sanction " intended " to add 
validity " to the treaty ; that they, the said govern- 
ment, and in particular the said "Warren Ilastings, as 
the first executive member of the same, were bound 
by the ties of natural justice duly to exercise the 
aforesaid right, if need were ; and tliat their duty so 







" 1 





to interfere was more particularly enforced by the 
spirit of the censures passed both by the Directors 
and Proprietors in the Rohilla war, and the satis- 
faction expressed by the Directors " in the honorable 
end put to that war." 

PABT m. 


I. That during the life of the Vizier Sujah ul 
Dowlah, and for some timo after his death, under his 
son and successor, Asoph ul Dowlah, the Nabob Py- 
zool Khan did remain without disturbance or moles- 
tation ; that he did all the while imagine his treaty 
to be under the sanction of the Company, from Colo- 
nel Champion's affixing his signature thereto as a 
witness, "which signature, as he [Fyzoola Kh&n] 
supposed," rendered the Company the arhttratart be- 
tween the Vizier and himself, in case of disputes ; 
and that, being " a man of sense, but extreme pusil- 
lanimity, a good farmer, fond of wealth, vet poBsesaed 
of tne passion of ambition" he did peaceably apply 
himself to " improve the state of his country, and 
did, by his oivn prudence and attention, increase the 
revenues thereof beyond the amount specified in Su- 
jah ul Dowlah's grant." 

II. That in the year 1777, and in the beginning 
of the year 1778, being " alarmed at the young Viz- 
ier's resumption of a number of jaghires granted by 
his father to different persons, and the injustice and 
oppression of his conduct in general," and having 
now learned (from whom does not appear, but prob- 
ably from some person supposed of competent author- 



ity) thai Colonel Champion formerly witnessed the 
treaty as a private jierson, the Nabob Fyzoola Khdn 
did make frequent and urgent solicitations to Nathan- 
iel Middleton, Esquire, then Resident at Oude, and to 
Warren Hastings aforesaid, then Governor-General of 
Bengal, " for a renovation of his [the Nabob Fyzoola 
Khan's] treaty with the late Vizier, and tlie guaranty 
of the Company," or for a " separate agreement with 
the Company for his defence " : considering them, the 
Company, as " the only power in which he had confi- 
dence, and to which he could look up for protection." 

III. That the said Resident Middleton, and the said 
Governor-General Hastings, did not, as they were in 
duty bound to do, endeavor to allay the apprehensions 
of the Nabob Fyzoola Khan by . suring him of his 
safety under the sanction of Colonel Champion's at- 
testation aforesaid, but by their criminal neglect, if 
not by positive expressions, (as there is just ground 
from their subsequent language and conduct to be- 
lieve,) they, the said Middleton and the said Hast- 
ings, did at least keep alive and confirm (whoever 
may have originally suggested) the said apprehension ; 
and that such neglect alone was the more highly cul- 
pable in the said Hastings, inasmuch as he, the said 
Hastings, in conjunction with other members of the 
Select Committee of the then Presidency of Bengal, 
did, on the 17th of September, 1774, write to Colonel 
Champion aforesaid, publicly authorizing him, the said 
Colonel Champion, to join his sanction to the accom- 
modations agreed on between the Vizier Sujah ul 
Dowlah and the Nabob Fyzoola Khan, to add to their 
validiti/, — &n6i on the 6th of October following did 
again write to the said Colonel Cliampion, more ex- 






plicitlf, to Juiii his sanction, " either bj attesting the 
treaty, or aclinj ai guaranty on the part of thu Com- 
pany for the i^rformance of it " : both which lotters, 
though tliey did not arrive until after the actual 
signature of the said Culonel Champion, do yot in- 
controTcrtibly mark the solemn intention of the said 
Comraittoe (of whicli the said Hastings was President) 
tha* the sanction f Colonel Champion's attestation 
shculd be regarded as u public, not a private, iiction ; 
and it was more [toculiurly incumljont on such persons, 
who liad been members of the said Committee, so to 
regard the same. 

IV. Tlmt the said Warren Hastings was further 
guilty of much criminal concealment for the space of 
" twelve months," inasmuch as he did not lay before 
the board the frequent and urgent solicitations which 
he, the said Hastings, was continually receiving from 
tlie Nabob Pyzoola Khun, until the 9th of March, 
1778 ; on which day the said Hastings did commu- 
nicate to the Council a public letter of the aforesaid 
Middleton, Resident at Oude, acquainting the board 
that ho, the said Middleton, taking occasion from a 
late application of Fyzoola Khtln for the Company's 
guaranty, had deputed Mr. Daniel Octavus Barwell 
(Assistant Resident at Benares, but then on a visit to 
the Resident Middleton at Luckuo"^^ to proceed witli 
a special commission to Rampoor, there to inquire on 
tlio spot into tlie truth of certain reports circulated to 
the prejudice of Fyzoola Khan, which reports, how- 
ever, the said Middleton did afterwards confess him- 
self to have " always " thought " in the highest degree 

That the said Resident Middleton did " request to 


know whether, on proof of Fyzook Khan's innocence, 
the honorable board wonld be pleased to grant him 
[the Rfsident] poruiis.«*ion to comply with his [ Fyzoo- 
la Klmn's] reqnest ')■ the Company's guarantying his 
treaty with . .c Vizier." And the said Middleton, m 
excuse for having irregularly " availed himself of the 
abilities of Mr. Daniel Barwell," who belonged to an- 
other station, and for deputing him with the aforesaid 
commission to Rampoor without the previous knowl- 
edge of the board, did urge the plea ''of immediate 
neaemti/" ; and that such plea, if the necessity really 
existed, was a strong charge and accusation against 
the said Warren Hastings, from whoso criminal neg- 
lect and concealment the urgency of such necessity 
did arise. 

V the Governor-General, Warren Hastings 
aforesaid, did immediately move, " that the board ap- 
prove the deputation of Mr. Daniel Barwell, and that 
the Resident [Middleton] bo authorized to offer the 
Company's guaranty for the observance of the treaty 
subsisting between the Vizier and Fyzoola Khan, pro- 
vided it meets with tho Vizier's concurrence"; and 
that the Governor-General's proposition was resolved 
in the affirmative : the usual majority of Council 
then consisting of Richard Barwell, Esquire, a near 
relation of Daniel Octavus Barwell aforesaid, and the 
Governor-General, Warren Hastings, who, in case of 
an equality, had the casting voice. 

VI. That, on receiving from Mr. Daniel Barwell 
full and early assurance of Fyzoola Khan's " having 
preserved every article of his treaty inviolate," the 
Resident, Middleton, applied for the Vizier's concur- 





. 1 

I i 




rence, which was readily obtained, — the Yizier, how- 
ever, "premising, that ho gave his consent, taking it 
for granted, that, on Fyzoola Eh&n's receiving the 
treaty and khelaut [or robe of honor], he was to 
make him a return of the complimentary presents 
usually offered on such occasions, and of such an 
amount as should be a manifestation of Fyzoola Khdn'a 
due sense of his friendship, and suitable to his Excel- 
lency/^ s rank to receive " ; and that the Resident, Mid- 
dleton, " did make himself in some measure respon- 
sible for the said presents being obtained," and did 
write to ""tr. Daniel Barwell accordingly. 

VII. That, agreeably to the resolution of Council 
hereinbefore recited, the solicited guaranty, under 
the seal of the Resident, Middleton, thus duly au- 
thorized on behalf of the Company, was transmitted, 
together with the renewed treaty, to Mr. Daniel Bar- 
well aforesaid at Rampoor, and that they were both by 
him, the said Barwell, presented to the Nabob Fyzoola 
Khan, with a solemnity not often paralleled, " in the 
presence of the greatest part of the Nabob's subjects, 
who were assembled, that the ceremony might creato 
a full belief in the breasts of all his people that the 
Company would protect him as long as he strictly 
adhered to the letter of his treaty." 

VIII. That, in the conclusion of the said ceremo- 
ny, the Nabob Fyzoola Khan did deliver to the said 
Barwell, for the use of ♦he Vizier, a nuzzer (or pres- 
ent) of elephants, hor«. &c., and did add thereto a 
lac of rupees, or 10,000Z. and upwards : which sum 
the said Barwell, "not being authorized to accept 
any pecuniary consideration, did at first refuse ; but 



upon Fyzoola Khftn's urging, that on such occasions 
it was the invariable custom of Hindostan, and tfiat 
it must on the present be expected, as it had been for- 
merly the case" (but when does not appear,) he, the 
said Barwell, did accept the said lac in the name of 
the Vizier, our ally, " in whose wealth " (as Warren 
Hastings on another occasion observed) "we should 
participate," and on whom we at that time had an 
accumulating demand. 

IX. That, over and above the lac of rupees thus 
presented to the Vizier, the Nabob Fyzoola Khan did 
likewise offer one other lac of rupees, or upwards of 
10,000?. more, for the Company, '• as some acknowl- 
edgment of the obligation he received ; that, although 
such acknowledgment was not pretended to be the 
invariable custom of Hindostan on such occasions, 
however it might on the present be expected," Mr. 
Daniel Barwell aforesaid (knowing, probably, the dis- 
position and views of the then actual government at 
Calcutta) did not, even at first, decline the said of- 
fer, but, as he was not empowered to accept it, did 
immediately propose taking a bond for the amount, 
until the pleasure of the board should be known. 

That the offer was accordingly communicated by 
the said Barwell to the Resident, Middleton, to be by 
him, the Resident, referred to the board, and that it 
was so referred ; that, in reply to the said reference 
of the Resident, Middleton, the Governor-General, 
"Warren Hastings, did move and carry a vote of Coun- 
cil, "authorizing Mr. Middleton to accept the offer 
made by Fyzoola Khan to the Company of one lao 
of rupees," without assigning any reason whatever in 
support of the said motion, notwithstanding it was 



1' 1 






P i' 

objected by a member of the board, " that, if the meas- 
ure was right, it became us to adopt it without such 
a consideration," and that " our accepting of the lao 
of rupees as a recompense for our interposition is be- 
neath the dignity of this government [of Calcutta], 
and will discredit us in the eyes of the Indian powers." 
That the acceptance of the said sum, in this cir- 
cumstance, was beneath the dignity of the said gov- 
ernment, and did tend so to discredit us; and that 
the motion of the said Hastings for such acceptance 
was therefore highly derogatory to the honor of this 


X. Thai; the aforesaid member of the Council did 
further disapprove altogether of the guaranty, " as 
unnecessary " ; and that another member of Coun- 
cil, Richard Barwell, Esquire, the near relation of 
Daniel Octavus Barwell, hereinbefore named, did de- 
clare, (but after the said guaranty had taken place,) 
that " this government [of Calcutta] was in fact en- 
gaged by Colonel Champion's signature being to the 
treaty with Fyzoola Khan." That the said unneces- 
sary guaranty did not only subject to an heavy ex- 
pense a prince whom we were bound to protect, but 
did further produce in his mind the following obvious 
and natural conclusion, namely, "that the signature 
of any person, in whatever public capacity he at present 
appears, will not he valid and of effect, as soon as some 
other shall fill his station " : a conclusion, however, 
immediately tending to the total discredit of all pow- 
ers delegated from the board to any individual ser- 
vant of the Company, and consequently to clog, per- 
plex, and embarrass in future all transactions carried 
on at a distance from the seat of government, and to 





disturb the security of all persons possessing instru- 
ments already so ratified —yet the only conclusion 
left to Fyzoola Khan which did not involve some af- 
front either to the private honor of the Company's ser- 
vants or to the public honor of the Company itself; 
and that the suspicions which originated from the said 
idea in the breast of Fyzoola Kh^n to the prejudice 
of the Resident Middleton's authority did compel the 
Governor-General, Warren Hastings, to obviate the 
bad eflfects of his first motion for the guaranty by a 
second motion, namely, " That a letter be written to 
Fyzoola KhS,n from myself, confirming the obligations 
of the Company as guaranties to the treaty formed be- 
tween him and the Vizier, — which will be equivalent 
in its effect, though not in form, to an engagement 
sent him with the Company's seal affixed to it." 

Xn.* That, whether the guaranty aforesaid waa 
or was not necessary, whether it created a new ob- 
ligation or but more fully recognized an obligation 
previously existing, the Governor-General, Warren 
Hastings, by the said guaranty, did, in the most ex- 
plicit manner, pledge and commit the public faith 
of the Company and the nation; and that by the 
subsequent letter of the said Hastings (which he at 
his own motion wrote, confirming to Fyzoola Khan 
the aforesaid guaranty) the said Hastings did again 
pledge and commit the public faith of the Company 
and the nation, in a manner (as the said Hastings 
himself remarked) "equivalent to an engagement 
with the Company's f al affixed to it," and more 
particularly binding th«. ?aid Hastings personally to 
exact a due observance ot the guarantied treaty, es- 

* Sic orig. 


1 r 






peciallj to protect the Nabob Fyzoola Eh&n against 
any arbitrary construction or unwarranted requisi- 
tion of the Vizier. 




I. That, soon after the completion of the guar- 
anty, in the ' ue year, 1778, intelligence was re- 
ceived in India of a war between England and 
France; that, on the first intimation thereof, the 
Nabob Fyzoola KliSn, "being indirectly sounded," 
did show much " promptness to render the Company 
any assistance within the bounds of his finances and 
ability " ; and that by the suggestion of the Resident, 
Middleton, hereinbefore named, he, the Nabob Fy- 
zoola Khfin, in a lette- to the Governor-General and 
Council, did make a voluntary "ofler to maintain 
two thousand cavalry (all he had) for our service," 
" though he was under no obligation to furnish the 
Company with a single man." 

n. That the Nabob Fyzoola KhSn did even " an- 
ticipate the wishes of the board"; and that, "on 
an application made to him by Lieutenant-Colonel 
Muir," the Nabob Fyzoola Khan did, " without hesi- 
tation or delay," furnish him, the said Muir, with 
five hundred of his best cavalry. 

That the said conduct of the Nabob Fyzoola Khfiu 
wp . communicated by the Company's servants both 
to each other and to their employers, with expres- 
eions of " pleasure " and " particular satisfaction," as 
an event " even surpassing their expectations " ; that 
the Governor-General, Warren Hastings, wa; officially 



requested to convey " the thanks of the board " ; and 
that, not satisfied with the bare discharge of his duty 
under the said request, he, the said Hastings, did, 
on the i'iu. of January, 1779, write to Fyzoola, " that, 
in Ms oicn name" as well as " that of the board, 
he [the said Hastings] returned him the warmest 
thanks for this instance of his faithful attachment 
to the Company and the English nation." 

IV.* That by the strong expressions above re- 
cited the said Warren Hastings did deliberately and 
emphatically adl his own particular confirmation to 
the general te!^umony of the Nabob Fyzoola KhSa's 
meritorious fidelity, and of his consequent claim ou 
the generosity, no less than the justice, of the Brit- 
ish government. 



I. That, notwithstanding his own private honor 
thus deeply engaged, notwithstanding the public jus- 
tice and generosity of the Company and the nation 
thus solemnly committed, disregarding the plain im- 
port and positive terms of the guarantied treaty, the 
Governor-General, Warren Hastings aforesaid, in No- 
vember, 1780, while a bod- ' Fyzoola Khan's cav- 
alry, voluntarily granted, till serving i/ndcr a 
British officer, did recomn. to the Yiziej ■ to re- 
quire from Fyzoola Khdn the quotr^. of troops stipu- 
lated by treaty to be furnished by the latter for his 
[the Vizier's] service, being five thousand horse," 
though, as the Vizier did not march in person, he 

• Sic orig. 








\ r : 




was not, under any construction of the treaty, enti- 
tled by stipulation to more than " two or three thou- 
sand troops,^' horse and foot, " according to the abil- 
ity of Fyzoola Ehdn " ; and that, whereas the said 
Warren Hastings would have been guilty of very 
criminal perfidy, if he had simply neglected to inter- 
fere as a guaranty against a demand thiis plainly 
contrary to the faith of treaty, so he aggravated the 
guilt of his perfidy in the most atrocious degree by 
being himself the first mover and instigator of that 
injustice, which he was bound by so many ties on 
himself, the Company, and the nation, not only not 
to promote, but, by every exertion of authority, influ- 
ence, and power, to control, to divert, or to resist. 


II. That the answer of Fyzoola Khan to the Vizier 
did represent, with many expressions of deference, 
duty, and all' iance, that the whole force allowed 
liim was but uve thousand men," and that " these 
consisted of two thousand horse and three thousand 
foot ; which," he adds, " in consequence of our inti- 
mate connection, are equally yours and the Compa- 
ny's " : though he does subsequently intimate, that 
" the three thousand foot are for the management of 
the concerns of his jaghire, and without them tho 
collections can never be made in time." 

That, on the communication of the said answer 
to the Governor-General, Warren Hastings, he, the 
said Hastings, (wlio, as the Council now consisted 
only of liimself and Edward Whcler, Esquire, " unit- 
ed in his own person all the powers of government,") 
was not induced to relax from his unjust purpose, 
but did proceed with new violence to record, that 
" the Nabob Fyzoola Khan had evaded the perform- 



anee of his part of the treaty between the late Nabob 
Sujah ul Dowlah and him, to which the Honorable 
Company were guaranties, and upon which he was 
lately summoned to furnish the stipulated number of 
troops, which he is obliged to furnish on the condi- 
tion by which he holds the jaghire granted to him." 

That, by the vague and indefinite term of evasion, 
the said Warren Hastings did introduce a loose and 
arbitrary principle of interpreting formal engage- 
ments, which ought to be regarded, more especially 
by guaranties, in a sense the most literally scrupu- 
lous and precise. 

That he charged with such evasion a moderate, 
humble, and submissive representation on a point 
which would have warranted a peremptory refusal 
and a positive remonstrance ; and that in consequence 
of the said imputed evasion he indicated a disposition 
to attach such a forfeiture as in justice could only 
have followed from a gross breach of treaty, — though 
the said Hastings did not then pretend any actual 
infringement even of the least among the conditions 
to wliich, in the name of the Company, he, the said 
Hastings, was the executive guaranty. 

in. That, however " the number of troops stipu- 
lated by treaty may have been understood," at the 
period of the original demand, " to be five thousand 
horse," yet the said Warren Hastings, at the time 
when he recorded the supposed evasion of Fyzoola 
Kh&n's answer to the said demand, could not be un- 
acquainted with the express words of the stipulation, 
as a letter of the Vizier, inserted in the same Consul- 
tation, refers the Governor-General to inclosed copies 
" of all engagements entered into by the late Vizier 

yOL. iz. 









and by himself [the reigning Yizier] with Fyzoola 
Khfin," and that the treaty itself, therefore, was at 
the very moment before the eaid Warren Hastings : 
which treaty (as the said Hastings observed with re- 
spect to another treaty, in the case of another person) 
'* most assuredly does not contain a syllable to justify 
his conduct ; but, by the unexampled latitude which 
he assumes in his constructions, he may, if he pleases, 
extort this or any other meaning from any part of 

IV. That the Vizier himself appears by no means 
to hare been persuaded of his own right to five thou- 
sand horse under the treaty, — since, in his corre- 
spondence on the subject, he, the Vizier, nowhere 
mentions the treaty as the ground of his demand, 
except where he is recapitulating to the Governor- 
General, Warren -Hastings, the substance of his, the 
said Hastings's, own letters; on the contrary, the 
Vizier hints his apprehensions lest Fyzoola Kh&n 
should appeal to the treaty against the demand, as 
a breach thereof, — in which case, he, the Vizier, 
informs the said Hastings of the projected reply. 
"Should Fyzoola Khan" (says the Vizier) "men- 
tion anything of the tenor of the treaty, the first 
breach of it has been committed by him, in keeping up 
more men than allowsd of by the treaty : I have 
accordingly sent a person to settle that point also. In 
case he should mention to me anything respecting 
the treaty, I will then reproach him witii having 
kwpt up too many troops, and will oblige him to 
send the five thousand horse " : thereby clearly inti- 
mating, that, as a remonstrance against the demand 

* ObsenrationB on Mr. Bristow'a DefeoM. 



as a breach of treaty could only be answered by charg- 
ing a prior breach of treaty on Fyzoola Kh&n, so by 
annulling the whole treaty to reduce the question to 
a mere question of force, and thus " oblige Fyzoola 
Khan to send the five thousand horse": "for," (con- 
tinues the Vizier,) " if, when the Company's affairs, 
on which my honor depends, re^ re it, Fyzoola Eh&n 
will not lend his assistance, what nsB is there to eon- 
tinue the country to him?" 

That the Vizier actually did make his application 
to Fyzoola Eh&n for the fire thousand horse, not as 
for an aid to which he had a just claim, but as for 
something over and above the obligations of the trea- 
ty, something " that would give increase to their 
friendship and satisfaction to the Nabob Governor," 
(meaning the said Hastings,) whose directions he 
represents as the motive " of his call for the five thou- 
sand horse to be employed," not in his, the Vizier's, 
" but in the Company's service." 

And that the aforesaid Warren Hastings did, there- 
fore, in recording the answer of Fyzoola Ehfin as an 
evasion of treaty, act in notorious contradiction not 
only to that which ought to have been the fair con- 
struction of the said treaty, but to that which he, the 
said Hastings, must have known to be the Vizier's 
own interpretation of the same, disposed as the Vizier 
was " to reproach Fyzoola Khltn with breach of trea- 
ty," and to " send up persons who should settle points 
with him." 

V. That the said Warren Hastings, not thinking 
himself justified, on the mere plea of an evasion, to 
push forward his proceedings to that extremity which 
he seems already to have made his scope and object, 




i, .M 

% f 







!j.if-.| I 


i I 


ARncues 07 chabob 



and seeking some better color for his iinjost and vio- 
lent purposes, did further move, that commissioner! 
should be sent from the Vizier and the Company to 
Fjzoola Ehftn, to insist on a clause of a treaty which 
nowhere appears, being essentially different from the 
treaty of Lall-Dang, though not in the part on which 
the requisition is founded ; and the said Hastings did 
then, in a style unusually imperative, proceed as fol- 

" Demand immediate delivery of three ^ousand cav' 
ally ; and if he thould evade or refute compliance, that 
the deputies shall deliver him a formal protest against 
him for breach of treaty, and return, making this re- 
port to the Yizier, which Mr. Middleton is to transmit 
to the board." 


r* .P 

VI. That the said motion of the Governor-General, 
Hastings, was ordered accordingly, — the Council, as 
already has been herein related, consisting but of two 
members, and the said Hastings consequently " unit- 
ing in his own person all the powers of government." 

VII. That, when the said Hastings ordered the 
said demand for three thousand cavalry, he, the said 
Hastings, well knew that a compliance therewith, on 
the part of the Nabob Fyzoola Eh&n, was utterly im- 
possible: for he, the said Hastings, had at the very 
moment before him a letter of Fyzoola Eh3a, stating, 
that he, Fyzoola Kh&n, had " but two thousand caval- 
ry " altogether; which letter is entered on the records 
of the Company, in the same Consultation, immediate- 
ly preceding the Governor-General's minute. That 
the said Hastings, therefore, knew that the only pos- 
sible consequence of the aforesaid demand necessarily 



and inevitably must be a protest for a breach of trea- 
ty ; and the Court of Directors did uot Hesitate to de- 
clare that the said demand *' carried the appearance 
of a determination to create a pretext for depriving 
him [Fjzoola Kh&n] of his jaghiro entirely, or to 
leave him at the mercy of the Vizier." 

YIII. That Richard Johnson, Esquire, Assistant 
Resident at Oude, was, agreeably to the afore-men- 
tioned order of Council, deputed commissioner from 
Mr. Middleton and the Vizier to Tyzoola Kh&n ; but 
that he did early give the most indecent proofs of 
glaring partiality, to the prejudice of the said Fyzoola 
Kh&u : for that the very next day (as it seems) after 
his arrival, he, the said Johnson, from opinions im- 
bibed in his journey, did state himself to be " unwill- 
ing to draw any favorable or flattering inferences 
relatively to the object of his mission," and did studi- 
ously seek to find new breach'^s of treaty, and, without 
any form of regular inquiry vhatever, from a single 
glance of his eye in passing, did take upon himself to 
pronounce "tlie Rohilla soldiers, in the district of 
Rpmpoor alone, to be not less than twenty thousand," 
and the grant of course to be forfeited. And th ^t 
such a gross and palpable display of a predetermina- 
tion to discover guilt did argue in the said Johnson 
a knowledge, a strong presumption, or a belief, that 
such representations woulJ be agi • "able to the secret 
wishes and views of the said Ha^viugs, under whose 
orders he, the said Johnson, acted, and to whom all 
his reports were to be referred. 






IX. That the said Richard Johnson did soon af- 
ter proceed to the immediate object of his mission, 

Vt " 



" which " (the said Johnson relates) *' was short to a 
degree." The demand was made, and '* a flat refti* 
sal" given. The question was repeated, with like 
effect. The said Johnson, in presence of proper 
witnesses, then drew up his protest, " together with 
a memorandum of a palliative offer made by the Na- 
bob Fyzoola Khftn," and inserted in the protest: — 

" That he would, in compliance with the demand, 
and in em^ormity to the treaty, which tpecified no 
definite number of cavalry or infantry, only expreiting 
troopi, furnish three thousand men: viz., he would, 
in addition to the one thousand cavalry already grant- 
ed, give one thousand more, when and wheresoever 
required, and one thousand foot," — together with 
one year's pay in p "* and funds for the regular 
payment of them t 

And this, the saio Tohnson observes, "I 

put down at his [the ^o jsoola Khftn's] partic- 

ular desire, but otherwise useless; as my ordert" 
(..hich orders do not appear) " were, not to receive any 
palliation, but a negative or affirmative" : though such 
palliation, as it is called by the said Johnson, might 
be, as it was, in the strictest conformity to the treaty. 

X. That in the said offer the Nabob Pyzoola Khan, 
instead of palliating, did at once admit the extreme 
right of the Vizier under the treaty, by agreeing to 
furnish three thousand men, when he, Fyzoola Khin, 
would have been justified in pleading his inability to 
send more than two thousand; that such inability 
would not (as appears) have been a false and eva- 
sive plea, but perfectly true and valid, — as the three 
thousand foot maintained by Pyzoola Kh&n were for 
the purposes of his internal government, for which the 






wholo three thousand must have been domonatrably 
necespary ; and that the Nabob Fyiioola Khftn, by de- 
clining to avail himself of a plea so fair, bo well found- 
ed, and 80 consonant to the indulgence expressly ac- 
knowledged in the treaty, and by thus meeting the 
specific demand of the Vizier as fully as, according to 
his own military establishment, he could, did for the 
said oflFer deserve rather the thanks of the said Vizier 
and the Company than the protest which tlic aforesaid 
Johnson, under the orders of Warren Hastings, did 

XI. That the report of the said protest, as well as 
the former letter of the said Johnson, were by the 
Resident, Middleton, transmitted to the board, togeth- 
er with a letter from the Vizier, founded on the said 
report and letter of the said Johnson, and proposing 
in consequence "to resume the grant, and to leave 
Fyzoola Khan to join his other luiihless brethren who 
were sent across the Ganges." 

That the said papers were read in Council on the 
4th of June, 1781, when the Governor-General, War- 
ren Hastings, did move and carry a vote to suspend a 
final resolution on the same: and the said Hastings 
did not express any disapprobation of the proceedings 
of the said Johnson ; neither did the said Hastings 
assign any reasons for his motion of suspension, which 
passed without debate. That in truth the said Hast- 
ings had then projected a journey up the country to 
meet the Vizier for the settlement of articles relative 
to the regulation of Oude and its dependencies, among 
which was included the jaghiro of Fyzoola Khan ; and 
the said Hastings, for the aloresaid pu- poses, did, on 
the 8d of July, by his own casting vote, grant to him- 


I i I 


ft'- 1*4 




self, and did prevail on his colleague, Edward Whe- 
ler, Esquire, to grant, a certain illegal delegation of 
the whole powers of the Governor-General and Coun- 
cil, and on the seventh of the same month did proceed 
on his way to join the Vizier at a place called Chunar, 
on the borders of Benares; and that the aforesaid 
vote of suspending a final resolution on the transac- 
tions with Fjzoola Kh&n was therefore in substance 
and effect a reference thereof by the said Hastings 
from himself in council with his colleague, Wheler, 
to himself in conference and negotiation with the Viz- 
ier, who, from the first demand of the five thousand 
horse, had taken every occasion of showing his incli- 
nation to dispossess Fyzoola Kh&n, and who before 
the said demand (in a letter which does not appear, 
but which the Vizier himself quotes as antecedent to 
the said demand) had complained to the said Hastings 
of the " injury and irregularity in the management 
of the provinces bordering on Rampoor, arising from 
Fyzoola Khan having the imcontroUed dominion of 
that district." 




I. That the Governor-General, Warren Hastings, 
being vested with the illegal powers before recited, 
did, on the 19th of September, 1781, enter into a 
treaty with the Vizier at Chunar, — which treaty (as 
the said Hastings relates) was drawn up " from a se- 
ries of requisitions presented to him [the said Hast- 
ings] by the Vizier," and by him received " with an 
instant and unqualified assent to each article " ; and 
that the said Hastings assigns his reasons for such 




ready assent in the following words: "I considered 
the subjects of his [the Vizier's] requests as essential 
to the reputation of our government, and no less to 
our interest than his." 

II. That in the said treaty of Ohuuar the third 
article is as follows. 

" That, as Fyzoola Khan has by his breach of treaty 
forfeited the protection of the English government, 
and causes by his continuance in his present inde- 
pendent state great alarm and detriment to the Na- 
bob Vizier, he be permitted, when time shall suit, to 
resume his lands, and pay him in money, through the 
Resident, the amount stipulated by treaty, after de- 
ducting the amount and charges of the troops he 
stands engaged to furnish by treaty ; which amount 
shall be passed to the account of the Company dur- 
ing the continuance of the present war." 

III. That, for the better elucidation of his policy 
in the several articles of the treaty above mentioned, 
the said Hastings did send to the Council of Calcutta 
(now consisting of Edward Wheler and John Mac- 
pherson, Esquires) two different copies of the said 
treaty, with explanatory minutes opposed to each 
article ; and that the minute opposed to the third 
article is thus expressed. 

"The conduct of Fyzoola Khan, in refusing the 
aid demanded, though ( 1.) not an absolute breach of 
treaty, was evasive and uncandid. ( 2.) The demand 
was made for five thousand cavalry. (3.) The engage- 
ment in the treaty is literally for five thousand horse and 
foot. Fyzoola Kh&n could not be ignorant that we 
had no occasion for any succors of infantry from him, 


* "3 



:'j «M 



iv4 = 



I '■■ 



and that cavalry would be of the most essential ser- 
vice, (4.) So scrupulom an attention to literal expres- 
sion, when a more liberal interpretation would have hem 
highly useful and acceptable to us, strongly marks his 
unfriendly disposition, though it may not impeach his fi- 
delity, and leaves him little claim to any exertions from 
us for the continuance of his jaghires. But (5.) lam 
of opinion that neither the Vizier's \yr the Company's 
interests would he promoted by depriving Fyzoola Khdn 
of his independency, and I have (6 ) ^.erefore r- served 
the execution of this agreement to au indefinite term; 
and our government may always interpose to prevent any 
UX effects from it." 

IV. Tha*, in his aforesaid authentic evidence of his 
own purposes, motives, and principles, in the third ar- 
ticle of the treaty of Chunar, the said Hastings hath 
established divers matters of weighty and serious 
crimination against himself. 

1st. That the said Hastings doth acknowledge 
therein, that he did, in a public instrument, solemnly 
recognize, " as a breach of treaty," and as such did 
subject to the consequent penalties, an act which he, 
the said Hastings, did at the same time think, and 
did immediately declare, to be " no breach of treaty " ; 
and by so falsely and unjustly proceeding against a 
person under the Company's guaranty, the said Hast- 
ings, on his own confession, did himself break the 
faith of the said guaranty. 

2d. Tliat, in justifying this breach of the Com- 
pany's faith, the said Hastings doth wholly abandon 
his second peremptory demand for the three thousand 
horse, and the protest consequent thereon ; and the 
said Hastings doth thereby himself condemn the vio- 
lence and injustice of the same. 




3dly. That, in recurring to the original demand of 
five thousand horse as the ground of his justification, 
the said Hastings doth falsely assert " the engagement 
in the treaty to be literally five thousand horse and 
foot" whereas it is in fact for two or three thousand 
men; and the said Hastings doth thereby wilfully 
attempt to deceive and mislead his employers, which 
is an high crime and misdemeanor in a servant of so 
great trust. 

4thly. That, with a view to his further justifica- 
tion, the said Hastings doth advanc^ - inciple that 
«a scrupulous attention to the liter o 'sion" of 

a guarantied treaty ''leaves" to tht _ ..on so ob- 
serving the same *'but little claim to the exertions" 
of a guaranty on his behalf; that such a principle 
is utteriy subversive of all faith of guaranties, and is 
therefore highly criminal in the first executive mem- 
ber of a government that must necessarily stand in 
that mutual relation to many. 

Sthly. That the said Hastings dcth profess his 
opinion of an article to which he gave an " instant and 
unqualified assent," that it was a measure " by which 
neither the Vizier's nor the Company's interests would 
be promoted," but from which, without some interposi- 
tion, " ill effects" must be expected; and that the said 
Hastings doth thereby charge himself with a high 
breach of trust towards his employers. 

6thly. That the said Hastings having thus con- 
fessed that consciously and wilfully (from what mo- 
tives he hath not chosen to confess) he d^-^ give his 
formal sanction to a measure both of injustice and 
impolicy, he, the said Hastings, doth urge in his de- 
fence, that he did at the same time insert words " re- 
serving the execution of the said agreement to an in- 









{ f 





definite term," with an intent that it might in truth 
be never executed at all, — but that " our government 
might always interpose," without right, by means of 
an indirect and undue influence, to prevent the ill 
effects following from p collusive surrender of a clear 
and authorized right to interpose ; and the said Hast- 
ings doth thereoy declare himself to have introduced 
a principle of d-plicity, deceit, and double-dealing in- 
to a public -igagement, which ought in its essence to 
be clear, open, and explicit; that such a declaration 
tends to r'-ake and overthrow the confidence of all in 
the most Lolemn instruments of any person so declar- 
ing, and is therefore an high crime and * aisdemeauor 
in the first executive member of government, by whom 
all treaties and other engagements of the Etate are 
principally to be conducted. 

V. That, by the explanatory minute aforesaid, the 
said Warren Hastings doth further, in the most direct 
manner, contradict his own assertions in the very let- 
ter which inclosed the said minute to his colleagues ; 
for that one of the articles to which he -here gave 
** an instant and unqualified assent, as no less to our in- 
terest than to the Vizier's" he doth here declare une- 
quivocally to be neither to our interests nor the Viz- 
ier's ; and the " unqualified assent " given to the said 
article is now so qualified as wholly to defeat itself. 
That by such irreconcilable contradictions the said 
Hastings doth incur the suspicion of much criminal 
misrepresentation in other like cases of unwitnessed 
conferences ; and in the present instance (as far as it 
extends) the said Hastings doth prove himself to have 
given an account both of his actions and motives by 
his own confession untrue, for the purpose of deceiv- 




ing his employers, which is an high crune and misde- 
meanor in a servant of so great trust. 

VI. That the said third article of the traaty of 
Chunar, as it thus stands explained by the said Hast- 
ings himself, doth on the whole appear designed to 
hold the protection of the Company in suspense ; that 
it acknowledges all right of interference to cease, 
but leaves it to our discretion to determine when it 
will suit our conveniency to give the Vizier the liber- 
ty of acting on the principles by us already admitted ; 
that it is dexterously constructed to balance the de- 
sires of one man, rapacious and profuse, against the 
fears of another, described as " of extreme pusilla- 
nimity and wealthy," but that, whatever may have 
been the secret objects of the artifice and intrigue 
confessed to form its very essence, it must on the 
very face of it necessarily implicate the Company in 
a breach of faith, whichever might be the event, as 
they must equally break their faith either by with- 
drawing their guaranty unjustly or by continuing 
that guaranty in contradiction to this treaty of Chu- 
nar; that it thus tends to hold out to India, and 
to the whole world, that the public principle of the 
English government is a deliberate system of injus- 
tice joined with falsehood, of impolicy, of bad faith, 
and trbachery ; and that the said article is therefo'-e 
in the highest degree derogatory to the honor, and 
injurious to the interests of this nation. 

i\\' < 

* \ i 

1 y 


f H ■ 


1' I" 




. i 





'■, ■ ;' 




B« t: 



PART vn. 


I. That, in consequence of the treaty of Chunar, 
the Governor-General, Warren Hastings, did send of- 
ficial instructions resi)ecting the various articles of 
the said treaty to the said Resident, Middleton ; and 
that, in a postscript, the said Hastings did forbid the 
resumption of the Nabob Fyzoola EhS^n's jaghire, 
"until circumstances may render it more expedient 
and easy to be attempted than the present more 
material pursuits of government make it appear " : 
thereby intimating a positive limitation of the indefi- 
nite term in the explanatory minute above recited, 
and confining the suspension of the article to the 
pressure of the war. 

II. That, soon after the date of the said instructions, 
and within two months of the signature of the treaty 
of Ghunar, the said Hastings did cause Sir Elijah Im- 
pey, Knight, his Majesty's chief-justice at Fort Wil- 
liam, to discredit the justice of the crown of Great 
Britain by making him the channel of unwarrant- 
able communication, and did, through the said Sir 
Elijah, signify to the Resident, Middleton, his, the 
said Hastings's, " approbation of a auhiidy from Fy- 
zoola Eh&n." 

in. That the Resident, in answer, represents the 
proper equivalent for two thousand horse and one 
thousand foot (the forces offered to Mr. Johnson by 
Fyzoola Khan) to be twelve lacs, or 120,000Z. sterling 
and upwards, each year; wliich the said Resident 
supposes is considerably beyond what he, Fyzoola 



Kh&n, will voluntarily pay : " however, if it is your 
wish that the claim should be made, I am ready to 
take it up, and you may be agsured nothing in my 
power shall be left undone to carry it through." 

IV. That the reply of the said Hastings doth not 
appear; but that it does appear on record that "a 
negotiation" (Mr. Johnson's) "was begun for Pyzoo- 
la Khan's cavalry to act with General Goddard, and, 
on his [Fyzoola KhSn's] evading it, that a sum of 
money was demanded." 

V. That, in the months of February, March, and 
April, the Resident, Middle ton, did repeatedly pro- 
pose the resumption of Fyzoola Khftu's jaghiro, agree- 
ably to the treaty of Chunar ; and that, driven to ex- 
tremity (as the said Hastings supposes) " by the pub- 
lic menaces and denunciations of the Resident and 
minister," Hyder Beg Khkn, a creature of the said 
Hastings, and both the minister and Resident acting 
professedly on and under the treaty of Chunar, " the 
Nabob Fyzoola Khan made such preparations, and 
such a disposition of his family and wealth, as evi- 
dently manifested either an intended or an expected 

VI. That on the 6th of May the said Hastings did 
Bend his confidential agent and friend, Major Palmer, 
on a private commission to Lucknow; and that the 
said Palmer was charged with secret instructions rel- 
ative to Fyzoola Khan, but of what import cannot be 
ascertained, the said Hastings in his public instruc- 
tions having inserted only the name of Fyzoola Kh^n, 
as a mere reference (according to the explanation of 











the said Hastings) to what he had verbally commu* 
nicated to the said Palmer ; and that the said Hast- 
ings was thereby guilty of a criminal concealment. 

Vn. Tliat some time about the month of August 
an engagement happened between a body of Fyzoola 
Khfin's cavalry and a part of the Vizier's army, in 
which the latter were beaten, and their guns taken ; 
that the Resident, Middleton, did represent the same 
but as a slight and accidental affray ; that it was ac- 
knowledged the troops of the Vizier were the aggres- 
sors ; that it did appear to the board, and to the said 
Hastings himself, an affair of more considerable mag- 
nitude ; and that they did make the concealment there- 
of an article of charge against the Resident, Middle- 
ton, though the said Resident did in truth acquaint 
them with the same, but in a cursory manner. 

VIII. Tliat, immediately after the said " fray " at 
Daranagur, the Vizier (who was " but a cipher in the 
hands " of the minister and the Resident, both of 
them directly appointed and supported by the said 
Hastings) did make of Fyzoola Khan a new demand, 
equally contrary to the true intent and meaning of 
the treaty as his former requisitions : which new de- 
mand was for the detachment in garrison at Darana- 
gur to be cantoned as a stationary force at Lucknow, 
the capital of the Vizier ; whereas he, the Vizier, had 
only a right to demand an occasional aid to join his 
army in the field or in garrison during a war. But 
the said new demand being evaded, or rather refused, 
agreeably to the fair construction of the treaty, by 
the Nabob Fyzoola Khftn, the matter was for the pres- 
ent dropped. 



IX. That in tho letter in which the Resident, Mid- 
dleton, did mention " what he calls the fray " afore- 
said, the said Middlcton did again apply for the re- 
sumption of the jaghire of Rampoor ; and that, the 
objections against the measure being now removed, 
(by the separate peace with Sindia,) he desired to 
know if the board " would give assurances of their 
support to the Vizier, in case, ichich " (says the Resi- 
dent) " / think very probable, his [the Vizier's] otvn 
itrength should be found unequal to the undertaking." 


X. That, although the said Warren Hastings did 
make the foregoing application a new charge against 
the Resident, Middleton, yet the said Hastings did 
only criminate the said Middleton for a prt ^ osal tend- 
ing " at such a crisis to increase the number of our 
enemies," and did in no degree, either in his articles 
of charge or in his accompanying minutes, cypress 
any disapprobation whatever of the principle; that, 
in truth, the whole proceedings of tiie said Resident 
were the natural result of the treaty of Chunar ; that 
the said proceedings were from time to time commu- 
nicated to the said Hastings; that, as he nowhere 
charges any disobedience of orders on Mr. Middleton 
with respect to Fyzoola Khfin, it may be justly in- 
ferred that the said Hastings did not interfere to 
check the proceedings of the said Middleton on that 
subject; and that by such criminal neglect the said 
Hastings did make the guilt of the said Middleton, 
whatever it might be, his own. 






TOI,. IX. 








'' ■ |i 


I. That on the charges and for the misdemeanors 
above specified, together with divers other accusa- 
tions, the Governor-General, Warren Hastings, in 
September, 1782, did remove t "^foresaid Mlddleton 
from his office of R sident -t ae, and did appoint 
thereto John Bristow, Esquire, whom lie had twice 
before, without cause, recalled from the same; and 
that about the same time the said Hastings did be- 
lieve the mind of the Nabob Fyzoola Khftn to be so 
irritated, in consequence of the above-recited conduct 
of the late Resident, Middleton, and of his, the said 
Hastings's, own criminal neglect, that he, the said 
Hastings, found it necessary to write to Fyzoola 
Khan, assuring him " of the favorable disposition of 
the government toward him, while he shall not have 
forfeited it by any improper conduct " ; but that the 
said assurances of the Governor-General did not tend, 
as soon after appeared, to raise much confidence in 
the Nabob, over whom a public instrument of the 
same Hastings was still holding the terrors of a dep- 
rivation of his jaghire, and an exile " among his oth- 
er faithless brethren across the Ganges." 

n. That, on the subject of Fyzoola Khan, the said 
Hastings, in his instructions to the new Resident, 
Bristow, did leave him to be guided by his own 
discretion ; but he adds, " Be careful to prevent the 
Vizier's affairs from being involved with new difficul- 
ties, while he has already so many to oppress him" : 
thereby plainly hinting at some more decisive meas- 
ures, whenever the Vizier should be less oppressed 
with difficulties. 



in. That the Resident, Bristow, after acquainting 
the Governor-General with his intentions, did under 
the said instructions renew the aforesaid claim for a 
sum of money, but with much caution and circum- 
spection, distantly sounding AUif Khftn, the vakeel 
(or envoy) of Fyzoola Khan at the court of the 
Vizier ; that " AUif Khfin wrote to his master on the 
subject, and in answer he was di.octed not to agree 
to the granting of any pecuniary aid." 

IV. That the Resident, Bristow, did then openly 
depute Major Palmer aforesaid, with the concurrence 
of the Vizier, and the approbation of the Governor- 
General, to the Nabob Fyzoola Khfin, at Rampoor; 
and that the said Palmer was to "endeavor to con- 
vince the Nabob that all doubts of his attachment to the 
Vizier are ceased, and whatever claims may he made 
on him are founded upon the basis of his interest and 
advantage and a plan of establishing his right to the 
possession of his jaghire." That the sudden ceasing 
of the said doubts, without any inquiry of the slight- 
est kind, doth warrant a strong presumpL. . of the 
Resident's conviction that they never really existed, 
but were artfully feigned, as a pretence for some 
harsh interposition ; and that the indecent mocker/ 
of establishing, as a matter of favor, for a pecuniary 
consideration, rights which were never impeached 
but by the treaty of Chunar, (an instrument recorded 
by Warren Hastings himself to be founded on false- 
hood and injustice,) doth powerfully prove the true 
purpose and object of all the duplicity, deceit, and 
double-dealing with which that treaty was prqjected 
and executed. 





( r 


♦ 1 



,* ,» 


V. That the said Palmer was instructed by the 
Resident, Bristow, with the subsequent approbation 
of the Governor-General, "to obtain from Fyzoola 
Kh&n an annual tribute"; to which the Resident 
adds, — ^^ ^ you can procure from him, over and above 
thi», a pethcush [or fine] of at least Jive lace, it would 
be rendering an essential service to the Vizier, and 
add to the confidence hi$ Excellency would hereafter 
repose in the attachment of the Nabob Fyzoola Khdn." 
And that the said Governor-General, Hastings, did 
give the following extraordinary ground of calcula- 
tion, as the basis of the said Palmer's negotiation for 
the annual tribute aforesaid. 

" It was certainly understood, at the time the treaty 
was concluded, (of which this stipulation was a part,) 
that it applied solely to cavalry : as the Nabob Vizier, 
possessing the service of our forces, could not possibly 
require infantry, and least of all such infantry as Fy- 
zoola Kh^n could furnish ; and a single horseman in- 
cluded in the aid which Fyzoola Khdn might furnish 
would prove a literal compliance with the said stipula- 
tion. The number, therefore, of horse implied by it 
ought at least to be ascertained: we will suppose five 
thousand, and, allowing the exigency for their attend- 
ance to exist only in the proportion of one year in five, 
reduce the demand to one thousand for the computa- 
tion of the subsidy, which, at the rate of fifty rupees 
per man, will amount to fifty thousand per mensem. 
This may serve for the basis of this article in the ne- 
gotiation upon it." 

VI. That the said Warren Hastings doth then con- 
tinue to instruct the said Palmer in the alternative 
of a refusal from Fyzoola KhSn. " If Fyzoola Kh&n 





shall refuse to treat for a subsidy, and clftiin tl ^"n- 
efit of his original agreement in its litcrnl exp i, 

he po»»esie» a right which we cannot <^\ lute, ..u it 
will in that case remain only to fix th. ; recise num- 
ber of horse wii'ch he shall furniRh, which ought at 
least to exceed twenty-five hundred." 


VII. That, in the alwve-recitod instruction, the 
said Warren Hastings doth insinuate (for he doth not 
directly assert), — 

1st. That wo are entitled by treaty to five thousand 
troops, which he says were undoubtedly intended to 
be all cavalry. 

2d. That the said Hastings doth then admit that 
a single horseman, included in the aid furnished by 
Fyzoola Khan, would prove a literal compliance. 

3d. That the said Hastings doth next resort again 
to the supposition of our right to the whole five thou- 
sand cavalry. 

4th. That the said Hastings doth afterwards think, 
in the event of an explanation of the treaty, and a 
settlement of the proportion of cavalry, instead of a 
pecuniary commutation, it will be all we can demand 
that the number should at least exceed twenty-five hun- 

6th. That the said Hastings doth, in calculating 
the supposed time of their service, assume an arbitrary 
estimate of one year of war to four of peace ; which 
( however moderate the calculation may appear on the 
average of the said Hastings's own government) doth 
involve a principle in a considerable degree repug- 
nant to the system of perfect peace inculcated in the 
standing orders of the Company. 

6th. That, in estimating the pay of the cavalry to 






1. :J ' 


1 1 

1 1 1 





be commuted, the said Hastings doth fix the pay of 
each man at fifty rupees a month; which on five 
thousand troops, all cavalry, (as the said Hastings 
supposes the treaty of Lall-Dang to have meant,) 
would amount to an expense of thirty lacs a year, or 
between 300,000Z. or 400,000^. And this expense, 
strictly resulting (according to the calculations of the 
said Hastings) from the intention of Sujah ul Dowlah's 
grant to Pyzoola Khfiji, was designed to be supported 
out of a jaghire valued at fifteen lacs only, or some- 
thing more than 150,000Z. of yearly revenue, just half 
the amount of the expense to be incurred in consider- 
ation of the said jaghire. 

And that a basis of negotiation so inconsistent, so 
arbitrary, and so unjust is contrary to that uprightness 
and integrity which should mark the transactions of 
a great state, and is highly derogatory to the honor 
of this nation. 

Vni. That, notwithstanding the seeming modera- 
tion and justice of the said Hastings in admitting the 
clear and undoubted right of Fyzoola KhSn to insist 
on his treaty, the head of instruction immediately 
succeeding doth afibrd just reason for a violent pre- 
sumption that such apparent lenity was but policy, to 
give a color to his conduct : he, the said Hastings, in 
the very next paragraph, bringing forth a new engine 
of oppression, as follows. 

" To demand the surrender of all the ryots [or 
peasants] of the Nabob Vizier's dominions to whom 
Fyzoola has given protection and service, or an annual 
tribute in compensation for the hss sustained by the Nabob 
Vizier in his revemie thus transferred to Fyzoola £^dn, 

" You have stated the increase of his jaghire, occa- 

--Kf, gaii- 



sioned by this act, at the moderate sum of fifteen lacs. 
The tribute ought at least to he one third of that amount. 
" We conceive that Fyzoola Eh&n himself may be 
disposed to yield to the preceding demand, on the ad- 
ditional condition of being allowed to hold his lands 
in ultumgaw [or an inheritable tenure] instead of his 
present tenure by jaghire [or a tenure for life] . This 
we think the Vizier can have no objection to grant, 
and we recommend it; hut for this a fine, or peshcush, 
ought to be immediately paid, in the customary proportion 
of the jumma, estimated at thirty lacs." 

IX. That the Resident, Bristow, (to whom the letter 
containing Major Palmer's instructions is addressed,) 
nowhere attributes the increase of Fyzoola Khan's 
revenues to this protection of the fugitive ryots, sub- 
jects of the Vizier ; that the said Warren Hastings 
was, therefore, not warranted to make that a pretext 
of such a peremptory demand. That, as an induce- 
ment to make Fyzoola Khin agree to the said demand, 
it is offered to settle his lands upon a tenure which 
would secure them to his children ; but that settlement 
is to bring with it a new demand of a fine of thirty 
lacs, or 300,OOOZ. and upwards ; that the principles 
of the said demand are violent and despotic, and tho 
inducement to acquiescence deceitful and insidious; 
and that both the demand and the inducement are 
derogatory to the honor of this nation. 






X. That Major Palmer aforesaid proceeded under 
these instructions to Rampoor, where his journey " to 
extort a sum of money" was previously known from 
Allif Kh&n, vakeel of Fyzoola Khfin at the Vizier's 
court ; and that, uotwithstandirg the assurances of 



f J 



the friendly disposition of government given bj the 
said Hastings, (as is herein related,) the Nabob Fj- 
zoola Khdn did express the most serious and despond- 
ing apprehensions, both by letter and through his va- 
keel, to the Resident, Bristow, who represents them 
to Major Palmer in the following manner. 

" The Nabob Fyzoola KhILu complains of the dis- 
tresses he has this year suffered from ^''a drought. 
The whole collections have, with great management, 
amounted to about twelve lacs of rupees, from which 
sum he has to support his troops, his family, and 
several relations and dependants of the late Bohilla 
chiefs. Se says, it clearly appears to be intended to 
deprive him of his country, aa the high demand you have 
made of him ia inadmimble. Should he have assented 
to it, it would be impossible to perform the conditions, 
and then his reputation would be injured by a breach 
of agreement. AUif Khdn further represents, that it 
is his master" s intention, in case the demand should not 
be relinquished by you, first to proceed to l/ucknow, where 
he proposes having an interview with the Vizier and the 
Resident; if he should not be able to obtain his own 
terms for a future possession of his jaghire, he will set 
off for Calcutta in order to pray for justice from the 
Honorable the Governor- General, He observes, it is 
the custom of the Honorable Company, when they 
deprive a chief of his country, to grant him some 
allowance. This he expects from Mr. Hastings's 
bounty ; but if he should be disappointed, he will cer- 
tainly set off upon a pilgrimage to Mecca and Medina, 
and renounce the cares of the world. — He directs his 
vakeel to ascertain whether the English intend to de- 
prive him of his country ; for if they do, he is ready 
to surrender it, upon receiving an order from the 




XI. That, after much negotiation, the Nabob Fy- 
zoola Khan, " being fully sensible that an engagement 
to furnish military aid, however clearly the conditions 
might be stated, must he a source of perpetual misunder- 
standing and ineonvenieneies" did at length agree with 
Major Palmer to give fifteen lacs, or 150,000Z. and 
upwards, by four instalments, that he might be ex- 
empted from all future claims of military service; 
that the said Palmer represents it to be his belief, 
" thai no person, not knovm to possess your [the said 
Hastings's] confidence and support in the degree that 
lam supposed to do, would have obtained nearly so 
good terms"; but from what motive "terms so 
good" were granted, and how the confidence and 
support of the said Hastings did truly operate on the 
mind of Fyzoola KhSn, doth appear to be better ex- 
plained by anotb* - -)assage in the same letter, where 
the said Pain i- c r -atulates himself on the satisfac- 
tion which he, " Fyzoola Khdn in the conduct of 
this negotiatio ■ tie spent a month in order to ef- 
fect " by argument and persuasion what he could have 
obtained in an hour by threats and compulsions." 



I. That, in the course of the said negotiation for 
establishing the rights of the Nabob Fyzoola Khfi,n, 
Major Palmer aforesaid did communicate to the Resi- 
dent, Bristow, and through the said Resident to the 
Council-General of Bengal, the full and direct denial 
of the Nabob Fyzoola KhSn to all and every of the 
charges made or pretended to be made against him, 
as foUowa. 


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t, ! 

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" Fyzoola Kh&n persists in denying tho infringement 
on his part of any one article in the treaty, or the 
neglect of ''.ny obligation which it imposed upon him. 

" He does not admit of the improvements reported to 
he made in his jaghire, and even asserts that the col- 
lections this year will fall short of the original ytt?n»ia 
[or estimate] by roason of the long drought. 

"He denies having exceeded the limited number 
of Rohillas in his service ; 

" And having refused the required aid of cavalry, 
made by Johnson, to act with Gtneral Goddard. 

" He observes, respecting the charge of evading the 
Vizier's requisition for the cavalry lateh stationed at 
Daranagur, to be stationed at Lucknow, that he is 
not bound by treaty to maintain a stationary force 
for the service of the Vizier, but to supply an aid of 
two or tliree thousand troops in time of war. 

" Lastly, he asserts, that, so far from encouraging' 
the ryots [or peasants] of the Vizier to settle in his 
jaghire, it has been his constant practice to deliver 
them up to the Aumil of Rohilcund, whenever he 
could discover them." 

n. That, in giving his opinions on the afbresaid 
denials of the Nabob Fyzoola Khfin, tho said Palmer 
did not controvert any one of the constructions of tho 
treaty advanced by the said Nabob. 

That, although the said Palmer, " from general ap- 
pearances as well as universal report, did not doubt 
that the jumma of the jaghire is greatly increased,^* 
yet he, the said Palmer, did not intimate that it was 
increased in any degree near the amount reported, as 
it was drawn out in a regular estimate transmitted to 
the said Palmer expressly for the purposes of his nego- 




tiation, which was of course by him produced to the 
Nabob Pyzoola Khan, and to which specifically the de- 
nial of Fyzoola KhsLa must be understood to apply. 

That the said Palmer <iid not hint any doubt of 
the deficiency affirmed by Pyzoola Khan in the col- 
lections for the current year : and, 

That, if any increase of jumma did truly exist, 
whatever it may have been, the said Palmer did ac- 
knowledge it " to have been solemnly relinquished 
(in a private agreement) by the Vizier." 

That, although the said Palmer did suppose the 
number of Rohillas (employed "in ordinary occu- 
pations) in Rampoor alone to exceed that limited 
by the treaty for his [Pyzoola Khan's] service," yet 
the said Palmer did by no means imply that the 
Nabob Pyzoola Khan maintained in his service a 
single man more than was allowed by treaty ; and 
by a particular and minute account of the troops 
of Pyzoola Khan, transmitted by the Resident, Bris- 
tow, to the said Palmer, the number was stated but 
at 5,840, probably including officers, who were not 
understood to be comprehended in the treaty. 

That the said Palmer did further admit it » to le 
not clearly expressed in the treaty, whether the re- 
striction included Rohillas of all descriptions " ; but, 
at any rate, he adds, " it does not appear that their 
number is formidable, or that he [Pyzoola Khan] 
coxdd by any means siibsist such numbers as could 
cause any serious alarm to the Vizier; neither is there 
any appearance of their entertaining any views be- 
yond the quiet possession of the advantages which 
they at present eiyoy." 

And that, in a subsequent letter, in which the 
said Palmer thought it prudent " to vindicate him- 









self from any possible insinuation that he meant to 
sacrifice the Vizier's interest," he, the said Palmer, 
did positively attest the new claim on Fyzoola Khkn 
for the protection of the Vizier's ryots to be wholly 
without foundation, as the Nabob Fyzoola Eh&n 
"had proved to him [Palmer], by producing receipts 
of various dates and for great numbers of these peo- 
ple surrendered upon requisition from the Vizier's 

in., over and above the aforesaid complete 
refutation of the different charges and pretexts under 
which exactions had been practised, or attempted to 
be practised, on the Nabob Fyzoola Kh&n, the said 
Palmer did further condemn altogether the principle 
of calculation assumed in such exactions (even if 
they had been founded in justice) by the following 
explanation of the nature of the tenure by which, 
under the treaty of Lall-Dang, the Nabob Fyzoola 
Khkn held his possessions as a jaghiredar. 

"There are no precedents in the ancient usage 
of the country for ascertaining the nuzzerana [cus- 
tomary present] or peshoush [regular fine] of grants 
of this nature : they were bestowed by the prince as 
rewards or favors ; and the accustomary present in 
return was adapted to the dignity of the donor rath- 
er than to the value of the gift, — '" which it never, 
I believe, bore any kind of proportion.' 

IV. That a sum of money ("which of course 
was to be received by the Company") being now 
obtained, and the " interests both of the Company and 
the Vizier" being thus much ^^ better promoted" by 
" establishing the rights " of Fyzoola KhSc than they 




could have been by " depriving him of his indepen- 
dency" when every undue influence of secret and 
criminal purposes was removed from the mind of 
the Governor-General, Warren Hastings, Esquire, he, 
the said Hastings, did also concur with his friend and 
agent, Major Palmer, in the vindication of the Nabob 
Fyzoola Kh&n, and in the most ample manner. 

That the said Warren Hastings did now clearly 
and explicitly understand the clauses of .'.e treaty, 
" that Fyzoola Khin should send two or three [and 
not five"] thousand men, or attend in person, in case 
it was requisite." 

That the said Warren Hastings did now confess 
that the right of the Vizier under the treaty was 
at best "but a precarious and unserviceable right; 
and that he thought fifteen lacs, or 150,000Z. and 
upwards, an ample equivalent," (or, according to 
tl e expression of Major Palmer, an excellent bar- 
gain,') as in truth it was, " for expunging an article 
of such a tenor and so loosely worded." 

And, finally, that the said Hastings did give the 
following description of the general character, dis- 
position, and circumstances of the Nabob Fyzoola 


" The rumors which had been spread of his hos- 
tile designs against the Vizier were totally ground- 
less, and if he had been inclined, he had not the 
means to make himself formidable ; ou the contrar 
ry, being in the decline of life, and possessing a very 
fertile and prosperous jaghire, it is more natural 
to suppose that Fyzoola Khan wishes to spend the 
renaainder of his days in quietness than that he is 
preparing to embark in active and offensive scenes 
which must end in his own destruction." 

h : 

■1 iii 







MS i 
I'll / 




v. Yet that, notwithstanding this virtual and im- 
plied crimination of his whole conduct toward the 
Nabob Fjrzoola Eh&n, and after all the aforesaid acts 
sjstematicallj prosecuted in open violation of a posi- 
tive treaty against a prince who had an hereditary 
right to more than he actually possessed, for whose 
protection the faith of the Company and the nation 
was repeatedly pledged, and who had deserved and 
obtained the public thanks of the British govern- 
ment, — when, in allusion to certain of tlie said acts, 
the Court of Directors had expressed to the said 
Hastings their wishes " to be considered rather as 
the guardians of the honor and property of the na- 
tive powers than as the instruments of oppression," 
he, the said Hastings, in reply to the said Directors, 
his masters, did conclude his official account of the 
final settlement with Pyzoola Khkn with the following 
indecent, because unjust, exultation : — 

" Such are the measures which we shall ever wish 
to observe towards our allies or dependants upon our 







Copy of a Letter from Warren HaBtings, Esquire, to WU- 
liam Devaynea, Esquire, Chairman of the Court of Di- 
rectors of the East India Company, dated Cheltenham, 
11th of July, 1785, and printed by order of the House 
of Commons. 

2b Wtlliam Bevaynes, Esquire, Chairman of the Eon- 
orahle the Court of Directors. 

SIR, — The Honorable Court of Directors, in their 
general letter to Bengal by the " Surprise," dat- 
ed the 16th March, 1784, were pleased to express 
their desire that I should inform them of the peri- 
ods when each sum of the presents mentioned in my 
address of the 22d May, 1782, was received, what 
were my motives for withholding the several receipts 
from the knowledge of the Council, or of the Court 
of Directors, and what were my reasons for taking 
bonds for part of these sums, and for paying other 
sums into the treasury as deposits on my own ac- 

I have been kladly apprised that the information 
required as above is yet expected from me. I hope 

• As the letter referred to in the Eighth and Sixteenth Articles of 
Charge is not contained in any of the Appendixes to the Reports of 
the Select Committee, it has been thought necessary to annex it as 
an Appendix to these Chrrges. 




i - 






! < 


that the circumstances of my past situation, when 
considered, will plead my excuse for bavlng thus 
long withheld it The fact is, that I was not at the 
Presidency when the " Surprise " arrived ; and when 
I returned to it, my time and attention were so entire- 
ly engrossed, to the day of my final departure from it, 
by a Tariety of other more important occupations, of 
wliich. Sir, I may safely appeal to your testimony, 
grounded on the large portion contributed by myself 
of the volumes which compose our Consultations of 
that period, that the submission which my respect 
would have enjoined me to pay to the command 
imposed on me was lost to my recollection, perhaps 
from the stronger impression which the first and dis- 
tant perusal of it had left on my mind that it was 
rather intended as a reprehension for something 
which had given offence in my report of the original 
transaction than as expressive of any want of a further 
elucidation of it. 

I will now endeavor to reply to the different ques- 
tions which have been stated to me in as explicit 
a manner as I am able. To such information as I 
can give the Honorable Court is !ly entitled ; and 
where that shall prove defective, I will point out the 
easy means by which it may be rendered more com- 

First, I believe I can affirm with certainty, that the 
several sums mentioned in the account transmitted 
with my letter above mentioned were received at or 
within a very few days of the dates which are prefixed 
to them in the account ; but as this contains only the 
gross sums, and each of these was received in differ- 
ent payments, though at no great distance of time, I 
cannot therefore assign a greater degree of accuracy 



to the account. Perhaps the Honorable Court will 
judgo this sufficient for any purpose to which their 
inquiry was directed ; but if it should not be so, I 
will beg leave to refer for a more minute information, 
and for the means of making any investigation whicli 
they may think it proper to direct, respecting the 
particulars of this transaction, to Mr. Larkins, your 
Accouutant-General, who was privy to every process 
of it, and possesses, as I believe, the original paper, 
which contained the only account that I ever kept of 
it. In thi:i uach receipt was, as I recollect, specifical- 
ly inserted, with the name of the person by whom it 
was made ; and I shall write to him to desire that he 
will furnish you with the paper itself, if it is still in 
being and in his hands, or with whatever he can dis- 
tinctly recollect concerning it. 

For my motives for withholding the several receipts 
from the knowledge of the Council, or of the Court of 
Directors, and for taking bonds for part of these sums, 
and paying others into the treasury as deposits on 
my own account, I have generally accounted in my 
letter to the Honorable the Court of Directors of the 
22d May, 1782 : namely, that " I either cliose to con- 
ceal the first receipts from public curiosity by receiv- 
ing bonds for the amount, or possibly acted without 
any studied design which my menrory at that dis- 
tance of time could verify ; and tliat I did not think 
it wortli my care to observe the same means with tlie 
rest." It will not be expected that I should be able 
to give a more correct explanation of my intentions 
after a lapse of three years, having declared at the time 
thai: many particulars had escaped my remembrance ; 
neither shall I attempt to add more than the clearer 
affirmation of the facts implied in that report of 










» I 



jumcLSB or CHAnr^. 

them, and such inferences as necoe aiily, oi with a 
strong probability, follow them. 

I have said that the three first sums of i he a<y 
count were paid into the Company's treasury with' 
out passing through my hands. Tho second of these 
was forced into notice by its destination and appli- 
cation to the expense of a detachment which was 
formed and employed against Mahdajeo Sindia un- 
der the command of Lieutenant-Colonel Camac, as 
I pj jticularly apprised the Court of Directors in my 
letter of the 29th November, 1780. The other two 
were certainly not intended, when I received them, 
to be made public, though intended for public ser- 
vice, and actually applied to it. The exigencies of 
the government were at that time my own. and every 
pressure upon it rested with its full weight uj)on my 
mind. Wlierever I could find allowable means of 
relieving those wants, I eagerly seized them; but 
neither could it occur to me as necessary to state on 
our Proceedings every little aid which I could thus 
procure, nor do I know how I could have stated it, 
without appearing to court favor by an ostentation 
which I disdain, nor without the chance of exciting 
the jealousy of my colleagues by the constructive as- 
sertion of a separate and unparticipated merit, de- 
rived from the influence of my station, to which they 
might have laid an equal olaim. I should have 
deemed it particularly dishonorable to receive for my 
own use money tendered by men of .. ertain class, 
from whom I had interdicted the receipt of presents 
to my inferiors, and bound them ly oath not to re- 
ceive them. 1 was therefore more than ordinarily 
cautious to avoid the suspicion of it, which would 
scarcely have failed to light upon me, had I suffered 



the money to bo brought directly to my own li- a»e, 
or to that of any person known t . be in trust for ma : 
for these reasons I caused it to be transported im ae- 
diately to the treasury. There, jou well know, Sir, 
it could not be receiv'-i without b ing pa>!se(i to scv 6 
credit, and this could only be dotu: by entering it as a 
loan or as a deposit : 'he first wa the least liable to 
reflection, nnd therefore I had obvious y recourse to 
it. Why the second sum was entered as a deposit 
1 am utterly ignoratit : possibly it was- done without 
any special direction fr^ -n rie ; possibly because it 
was the simplest mnle of entry, md therefore pre 
ferred, as the transaction itself did not require oon- 
ccalraont. having been already .ivowed. 

Although I am firmly persuaded that these were my 
sortiments on the occasion, yet I will not aff^ a that 
they were. Though I feel their impression as the lo- 
mains of a series of thoughts retained on my memory, 
I am not certain thnt they may not have beea pro- 
iluced by subsequent reflection on f^e princ" .al fact, 
combining with it the probable motives of it. Of this 
I am certain, that it was my dc jcn originully to 
have concealed the receipt of iH tiie sums, except 
the second, fven from tiie knowledge if the CiUirt of 
Directors. Tliey had answered my purpose of pulv 
lie utility, and I had almost totally dismif->ed them 
from my r^ n rabrance. Bi .vlieii fortun threw 
a s ra in h.y ^ay of a magaitude which ci Id not 
be concealed, and the peculir.'" delicacy of mv siiu- 
atio I at !e timv in which I received it ma(.e me 
more cit imspect of appearances, I chose to ap- 
prise .mployers of it, which I dia hastily and gen- 
erally: astily, perhaps to prevent the Vigilance and 
activity f secret calumny; and renerally, because I 






111 I* 





I " 

4.1. ri 



knew not the exact amount of the sum, of which I 
was in the receipt, but not in the full possession. 
I promised to acquaint them with the result as soon 
as 1 should be in possession of it, and in the perform- 
ance of my promise I thought it consistent with it 
to add to the account all the former appropriations 
of the same kind : my good genius then suggesting 
to me, with a spirit of caution which might have 
spared me the trouble of this apology, had I uni- 
versally attended to it, that, if I had suppressed 
them, and they were afterwards known, I might \jQ 
asked what were my motives for withholding part 
of these receipts from the knowledge of the Court 
of Directors and informing them of the rest. 

It being my wish to clear up every doubt upon this 
transaction, which either my own mind could suggest 
or which may have been suggested by others, I beg 
leave to suppose another question, and to state the 
terms of it in my reply, by informing you that the 
indorsement on the bonds was made about the period 
of my leaving the Presidency, in the middle of the 
year 1781, in order to guard against their becoming 
a claim on the Company, as part of my estate, in the 
event of my death occurring in the course of the ser- 
vice on which I was then entering. 

This, Sir, is the plain history of the transaction. 
I should be ashamed to request that you would com- 
municate it to the Honorable Court of Directors, 
whose time is too valuable for the intrusion of a sub- 
ject so uninteresting, but that it is become a point 
of indispensable duty ; I must therefore request the 
favor of you to lay it, at a convenient time, before 
them. In addressing it to you personally, I yield to 
my own feelings of the respect which is due to them 

i Si 



as a body, and to the assurances which I derive from 
your experienced civilities that you will kindly over- 
look the trouble imposed by it. 
I have the honor to be, Sir, 
Your very humble and most obedient servant, 
(Signed) Wabben Hastinos 

CHBLTBirBAlf, II Jvfy, I78B. 








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Fkbkuary, 1788. 

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MY LORDS, — The gentlemen who have it in 
command to support the impeachment against 
Mr. Hastings have directed me to open the cause with 
a general view of the grounds upon which the Com- 
mons have proceeded in their charge against him. 
They have directed me to accompany this with an- 
other general view of the extent, the magnitude, the 
nature, the tendency, and the effect of the crimes 
which they allege to have been by him committed. 
They have also directed me to give an explanation 
(with their aid I may be enabled to give it) of such 
■'•oumstances, preceding the crimes charged on Mr. 
i, istings, or concomitant with them, as may tend 
to jlucidato whatever may be found obscure in the 
articles as they stand. To these they wished me to 
add a few illustrative remarks on the laws, customs, 
opinions, and manners of the people concerned, and 
who are the objects of the crimes we charge on Mr. 
Hastings. The several articles, as they appear before 
you, will be opened by other gentlemen with more 
particularity, with more distinctness, and, without 
doubt, with infinitely more ability, when they come 
to apply the evi.V.nce which naturally belongs to 
each article of this accusation. This, my Lords, is 









the plan which we mean to pursue on the great 
charge which is now to abide your judgment. 

M7 Lords, I must look upon it as an auspicious 
circumstance to this cause, in which the honor of the 
kingdom and the fate of many nations are involved, 
that, from the first commencement of our Parliamen- 
tary process to this the hour of solemn trial, not the 
smallest difference of opinion has arisen between the 
two nouses. 

My Lords, there are persons who, looking rather 
upon what was to be found in our records and his- 
tories than what was to be expected from the public 
justice, had formed hopes consolatory to themselves 
and dishonorable to us. They flattered themselves 
that the corruptions of India would escape amidst the 
dissensions of Parliament. They are disappointed. 
They will be disappointed in all the rest of their ex- 
pectations which they have formed upon everything, 
except the merits of their cause. The Commons will 
not have the melancholy unsocial glory of having 
acted a solitary part in a noble, but imperfect work. 
What the greatest inquest of the nation has begun its 
highest tribunal will accomplish. At length justice 
will be done to India. It is true that your Lordships 
will have your full share in this great achievement; 
but the Commons have always considered that what- 
ever honor is divided with you is doubled on them- 

My Lords, I must confess, that, amidst these en- 
couraging prospects, the Commons do not approach 
your bar without awe and anxiety. The magnitude 
of the iiterests which we have in charge will reconcile 
some degree of solicitude for the event with the un- 
doubting confidence with which we repose ourselves 




upon your Lordships' justice. For we are men, my 
Lords; and men are so mad a, that it is not only the 
greatness of danger, but the value of the adventure, 
which measures the degree of our concern in every 
undertaking. I solemnly assure your lordships that 
no standard is sufficient to estimate tue value which 
the Commons set upon the event of the cause they 
now bring before you. My Lords, the business of 
this day is not the business of this man, it is not sole- 
ly whether the prisoner at the bar be found innocent 
or guilty, but whether millions of mankind shall be 
made miserable or happy. 

Your Lordships will see, in the progress of this 
cause, that there is not only a long, connected, sys- 
tematic series of misdemeanors, but an equally con- 
nected system of maxims and principles invented to 
justify them. Upon both of these you must judge. 
According to the judgment that you shall give upon 
the past transactions in India, inseparably connected 
as they are with the principles which support them, 
the whole character of your future government in 
that distant empire is to be unalterably decided. It 
will take its perpetual tenor, it will receive its final 
impression, from the stamp of this very hour. 

It is not only the interest of India, now the most 
considerable part of the British empire, which is con- 
cerned, but the credit and honor of the British nation 
itself will be decided by this decision. We are to 
decide by this judgment, whether the crimes of indi- 
viduals are to be turned into public guilt and nation- 
al ignominy, or whether this nation will convert the 
very offences which have thrown a transient shade 
upon its government into something that will reflect 
a permanent lustre upon the honor, justice, and hu- 
manity of this kingdom. 

'. f 









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My Lords, there is another consideration, which 
augments the solicitude of the Commons, equal to 
those other two great interests I have stated, those 
of our empire and our national character, — some- 
thing that, if possible, comes more home tu the 
hearts and feelings of every Englishman : I mean, 
the interests of our Constitution itself, which is 
deeply involved in the event of this cause. The 
future upe and the whole effect, if not the very 
existence, of the process of an impeachment of 
high crimes and misdemeanors before the peers 
of this kingdom upon the charge of the Commons 
will very much be decided by your judgment in 
this cause. This tribunal will be found (I hope 
it will always be found) too great for petty causes : 
if it should at the same time be found incompetent 
to one of the greatest, — that is, if little offences, 
from their minuteness, escape you, and the greatest, 
from their magnitude, oppress you, — it is impos- 
sible that this form of trial should not in the end 
vanish out of the Constitution. For we must not 
deceive ourselves: whatever do<'n not stand with 
credit cannot stand long. And if the Constitution 
should be deprived, I do not mean in form, but 
virtually, of this resource, it is virtually deprived 
of everything else that is valuable in it. For 
this process is the cement which binds the whole 
together; this is the individuating principle that 
makes England what England is. In this court it 
is that no subject, in no part of the empire, can 
fail of competent and proportionable justice; here 
it is that we provide for that which is the substantial 
excellence of our Constitution, — I mean, the great 
circulation of responsibility, by which (excepting the 



Btipreme power) no man, in no circum-tnuco, can 
escape the account which }ip owps to the laws of 
his country. It is hy this process that mapstrar 
cy, which tries and c iitrols all other thiriRS, is it- 
self tried and coritrollcd. Other constitutions arc 
patisfied with making pood suVyects ; this i« a se- 
curity for good govern'>r9. It is hy this tribunal 
thaw statesmen who abuse ^ -^ir power are accuj^cd 
by statesmen and tried by statesmen, not upon the 
niceties of a narrow juri'^nrudence, hut upon the 
enlarged and solid principl. ^ of state morality. It 
is here that thofO w'ao by the abtiso of power have 
violated the spirit of law can never hope for pro- 
tection from any of its forms ; it is here that those 
who have refused to conform themselves to its i)cr- 
fections can never hope to escape through any of 
its defects. It ought, therefore, my Lords, to bo- 
come our common care to guard this your precious 
deposit, rare in its use, but powerful in its effect, 
with a religious vigilance, and never to sufler it 
to be either discredited or antiquated. For this 
great end your Lordships a-e invested with great 
and plenary powers: but you do not suspend, you 
do not supersede, you do not annihilate any subor- 
dinate jurisdiction ; on the contrary, you arc auxil- 
iary and supplemental to them all. 

Whether it is owing to the felicity of our times, less 
fertile in great offences than those which have gone 
before us, or whether it is from a sluggish ap^tl.y 
which has dulled and enervated the public, 
I am not called upon to determine,— but, whatever 
may bo the cause, it is now sixty-three years since 
any impeachment, grounded upon abuse of authority 
and misdemeanor in office, has come before this tri- 







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bunal. The last is that of Lord Macclesfield, which 
happened in the year 1725. So that the oldest pro- 
cess known to the Constitution of this country has, 
upon its revival, some appearance of novelty. At 
this time, when all Europe is in a state of, perhaps, 
contagious fermentation, when antiquity has lost all 
its reverence and all its effect on tiie minds of men, 
at the same time that novelty is still attended with 
the suspicions that always will be attached to what- 
ever is new, we have been anxiously careful, in a 
business which seems to combine the objections both 
to what is antiquated and what is novel, so to con- 
duct ourselves that nothing in the revival of this 
great Parliamentary process shall afford a pretext 
for its future disuse. 

My Lords, strongly impressed as they are with 
these sentiments, the Commons have conducted them- 
selves with singular care and caution. Without los- 
ing the spirit and zeal of a public prosecution, they 
have comported themselves with such moderation, 
temper, and decorum as would not have ill become 
the final judgment, if with them rested the final 
judgment, of this great cause. 

With very few intermissions, the affairs of India 
have constantly engaged the attention of the Com- 
mons for more than fourteen years. We may safely 
affirm wc have tried every mode of legislative pro- 
vision before we had recourse to anything of penal 
process. It was in IH year 1774 [1773 ?] wo framed 
an act of Parliament for remedy to the then existing 
disorders in India, such as tlie then information be- 
fore us enabled us to enact. Finding that the act 
of Parliament did not answer all the ends that were 
expected from it, we had, in the year 1782, recourse 

v: J^;i^^ 




to a body of monitory resolutions. Neither had we 
the expected fruit from them. When, therefore, 
we found that our inquiries and our reports, our 
laws and our admonitions, were alike despised, that 
enormities increased in proportion as they were for- 
bidden, detected, and exposed, — when wo found 
that guilt stalked with an erect and upright front, 
and that legal authority seemed to skulk and hide 
its head like outlawed guilt, — when we found that 
some of those very persons who were appomted by 
Parliament to assert the authority of the laws of 
this kingdom were the most forward, the most bold, 
and the most active in the conspiracy for their de- 
struction,— then it was time for the justice of the 
nation to recollect itself. To have forborne longer 
would not have been patience, but collusion; it 
would have been participation with guilt; it would 
have been to make ourselves accomplices with the 

criminal. • /• i j * 

Wo found it was impossible to evade painful duty 
without betraying a sacred trust. Having, therefore, 
resolved upon the last and only resource, a penal 
prosecution, it was our next business to act in a man- 
ner worthv of our long deliberation. In all points 
we proceeded with selection. We have chosen (we 
trust it will 60 appear to your Lordships) such a 
crime, and such a criminal, and such a body of evi- 
dence, and such a mode of process, as would have 
recommended this course of justice to posterity, even 
if it had not been supported by any example in tho 
practice of our forefathers. 

First, 10 speak of the process: we are to inform 
your Lordships, that, besides that long previous de- 
Uberation of fourteen years, we examined, as a pre- 



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liminary to this proceeding, every circumptance whicb 
could prove favorable to parties apparently delin- 
quent, before we finally resolved to prosecute. There 
was no precedent to be found in the Journals, favor- 
able to persons in Mr. Hastings's circumstances, that 
was not applied to. Many measures utterly unknown 
to former Parliamentary proceedings, and which, in- 
deed, seemed in some degree to enfeeble them, but 
which were all to the advantage of those that were to 
be prosecuted, were adopted, for the first time, upon 
this occasion. In an early stage of the proceeding, 
the criminal desired to be heard. He was heard; 
and he produced before the bar of the House that in- 
solent and unbecoming paper which lies upon our 
table. It was deliberately given in by his own hand, 
and signed with his own name. The Commons, how- 
ever, passed by everything offensive in that paper 
with a magnanimity that became them. They con- 
sidered nothing in it but the facts that the defendant 
alleged, and the principles he maintained ; and after 
a deliberation not short of judicial, we proceeded 
with confidence to your bar. 

So far as to the process; which, though I men- 
tioned last in the line and order in which I stated 
the objects of our selection, I thuught it best to dis- 
patch first. 

As to the crime which we chose, we first considered 
well what it was in its nature, under all the circum- 
stances which attended it. Wo weighed it with all 
its exten ons and with all its aggravations. On 
that review, we are warranted to assert ihat the 
crimes with which we charge tlve prisoner at the bar 
are substantial crimes, — that they are no errors or 
mistakes, such as wise and good men might possibly 



fall into, which may even produce very pernicious 
effects without being in fact great offences. The 
Commons are too liberal not to allow for the difficul- 
ties of a great and arduous public situation. They 
know too well the domineering necessities which fre- 
quently occur in all g 3at affairs. They know the exi- 
gency of a pressing occasion, which, in its precipitate 
career, bears everything down before it, — which does 
not give time to the mind to recollect its faculties, 
to reinforce its reason, and to have recourse to fixed 
principles, but, by compelling an instant and tumult- 
uous decision, too often obliges men to decide in a 
manner that calm judgment would certainly have re- 
jected. "We know, as we are to be served by men, 
that the persons who serve us must be tried as men, 
and with a very large allowance indeed to human in- 
firmity and human error. This, my Lords, we knew 
and we weighed before we came before you. But 
the crimes which wo charge in these articles are 
not lapses, defects, errors of common human frailty, 
which, as we know and feel, we can allow for. "We 
charge this offender with no crimes that have not 
arisen from passions which it is criminal to harbor, — 
with no offences that have not their root in avarice, 
rapacity, pride, insolence, ferocity, treachery, cruelty, 
"malignity of temper, — in short, in [with?] nothing 
that docs not argue a total extinction of all moral prin- 
ciple, that does not manifest an inveterate blackness 
of heart, dyed in grain with malice, vitiated, corrupt- 
ed, gangrened to the very core. If wo do not plant 
his crimes in those vices which the breast of man is 
made to abhor, and the spirit of all laws, human 
and divine, to interdict, we desire no longer to be 
heard upon this occasion. Let everything that can be 





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: ,.., 




pleaded ou the ground of surprise or error, upon 
those grounds be pleaded with success: we give up 
the whole of those predicaments. We urge no crimes 
that were not crimes of forethought. We charge him 
with nothing that he did not commit upon delibera- 
tion —that he did not commit against advice, suppli- 
cation, and remonstrance, -that he did not commit 
against the direct command of lawful authonty,— 
that he did not commit after reproof and reprimand, 
the reproof and reprimand of those who were author- 
ized by the laws to reprove and reprimand him. The 
crimes of Mr. Hastings are crimes not only in them- 
selves, but aggravated by being crimes of contumacy. 
They were crimes, not against forms, but agamst 
those eternal laws of justice which are our rule and 
our birthright. His offences are, not in formal, tech- 
nical language, but in reality, in substance and effect, 
high crimes and high misdemeanors. 

So far as to the crimes. As to the criminal, we 
have chosen him on the same principle on which we 
selected the crimes. We have not chosen to bring 
before you a poor, puny, trembling delinquent, mis- 
led, perhaps, by those who ought to have taught him 
better but who have afterwards oppressed him by 
their power, as they had first corrupted him by their 
example. Instances there have been many, wherein 
the punishment of minor offences, in inferior persons, 
has been made the means of screening crimes of an 
high order, and in men of high description. Our 
course is different. We have not brought before you 
an obscure offender, who, when his insignificance and 
weakness are weighed against the power of tlie prose- 
cution, gives even to public justice somethmg of the 
appearance of oppression: no, my Lords, we have 



brought before you the first man of India, in rank, 
authority, and station. Wo have brought before you 
the chief of the tribe, the head of the whole body 
of Eastern offenders, a captaiu-general of iniquity, 
under whom all the fraud, all the peculation, all tho 
tyranny in India are embodied, disciplined, arrayed, 
and paid. This is the person, my Lords, that we 
bring before you. We have brought before you such 
a person, that, if you strike at him with the firm 
and decided arm of justice, you will not have need 
of a great many more examples. You strike at the 
whole corps, if you strike at the head. 

So far as to the crime : so far as to the criminal 
Now, my Lords, I shall say a few words relative to 
the evidence which we ha-e brought to support such 
a charge, and which ought to be equal in weight to 
the charge itself. It is chiefly evidence of record, 
officially signed by the criminal himself in many 
instances. We have brought before you his own 
letters, authenticated by his own hand. On these we 
chiefly rely. But we shall likewise bring before you 
living witnesses, competent to speak to the points to 
which they are brought. 

When you consider the late enormous power of the 
prisoner, — when you consider his criminal, indefat- 
igable assiduity in the destruction of all recorded 
evidence, — when you consider the influence he has 
over almost all living testimony, — when you consider 
the distance of the scene of action, — I believe your 
Lordships, and I believe the world, will be astonished 
that so much, so clear, so solid, and so conclusive 
evidence of all kinds has been obtained against him. 
I have no doubt that in nine instances in ten the 
evidence is such as would satisfy the narrow precision 






supposed to prevail, and to a degree rightly to prevail, 
in all subordinate power and delegated jurisdiction. 
But your Lordships will maintain, what we assert and 
claim as the right of the subjects of Great Britain, 
that you are not bound by any rules of evidence, or 
any other rules whatever, except those of natural, 
immutable, and substantial justice. 

God forbid the Commons should desire that anything 
should be received as proof from them which is not 
by nature adapted to prove the thing in question ! 
If they should make such a request, they would aim 
at overturning the very principles of that justice to 
which they resort; they would give the nation an 
evil example that would rebound liik on themselves, 
and bring destruction upon their own heads, and on 
those of all their pc^terity. 

On the other hand, I have too much confidence m 
the learning with which you will be advised, and the 
liberality and nobleness of the sentiments with which 
you are born, to suspect that yo'i would, by any abuse 
of the forms, and a technical course of proceeding, 
deny justice to so great a part of the worid that 
claims it at your hands. Your Lordships always had 
an ample power, and almost unlimited jurisdiction; 
you have now a boundless object. It is not from this 
district or from that parish, not from this city or the 
other province, that relief is now applied for: exiled 
and undone princes, extensive tribes, suffering nations, 
infinite descriptioiis of men, different in language, in 
manners, and in riies, men separated by every barrier 
of Nature from you, by the Providence of God are 
blended in one common cause, and are now become 
suppliants at your bar. For the honor of this nation, 
in vindication of this mysterious Providence, let it be 





known that no rule formed upon municipal maxima 
(if any such rule exists) will prevent the courst of 
that imperial justice which you owe to the people that 
caU to you from all parts of a great disjointed word. 
For, situated as this kingdom is, an object, thank 
God, of envy to the rest of the nations, its conduct in 
that'high and elevated situation will undoubtedly be 
scrutinized with a severity as great as its power is 


It is well known that enormous wealth has poured 
into this country from India through a thousand 
channels, public and concealed ; and it is no particular 
derogation from our honor to suppose a possibility of 
being corrupted by that by which other empires have 
been corrupted, and assemblies almost as respectable 
and venerable as your Lordships' have been directly 
or indirectly vitiated. Forty millions of money, at 
least, have within our memory been brought from 
India into England. In this case the most sacred 
judicature ought to look to its reputation. Without 
offence we may venture to suggest that the best way 
to secure reputation is, not by a proud defiance of 
public opinion, but by guiding our actions in such a 
manner as that public opinion may in the end bo 
securely defied, by having been previously respected 
and dreaded. No direct false judgment is appre- 
hended from the tribunals of this country ; but it is 
feared that partiality may lurk and nestle in the abuse 
of our forms of proceeding. It is necessary, therefore, 
that nothing in that proceeding should appear to mark 
the slightest trace, sliould betray the faintest odor of 
chicane. God forbid, that, when you try the most 
serious of all causes, that, when you try the cause 
of Asia in the presence of Europe, there should be 




I / 



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IS i. 1 



the least suspicion that a narrow partiality, utterly de- 
structive of justice, should so guide us that a British 
subject in power should appear in substance to possess 
rights which are denied to the humble allies, to the 
attached dependants of this kingdom, who by their 
distance have a double demand upon your protection, 
and who, by an implicit ( I hope not a weak and use- 
less) trust in you, have stripped themselves of every 
other resource under heaven ! 

I do not say this from any fear, doubt, or hesitation 
concerning what your Lordships will finally do, — 
none in the world ; but I cannot shut my ears to the 
rumors which you all know to be disseminated abroad. 
The abusers of power may have a chance to cover 
themselves by those fences and intrenchments which 
were made to secure the liberties of the people against 
men of that very description. But Gk)d forbid it 
should be bruited from Pekin to Paris, that the laws 
of England are for the rich and the powerful, but to 
the poor, the miserable, and defenceless they afford 
no resource at all ! God forbid it should be said, no 
nation is equal to the English in substantial violence 
and in formal justice, — that in this kingdom we feel 
ourselves competent to confer the most extravagant 
and inordinate powers upon public ministers, but that 
we are deficient, poor, helpless, lame, and impotent 
in the means of calling them to account for their use 
of them ! An opinion has been insidiously circulated 
through this kingdom, and through foreign nations 
too, that, in order to cover our participation in guilt, 
and our common interest in the plunder of the East, 
we have invented a set of scholastic distinctions, ab- 
horrent to the common sense and unpropitious to the 
common necessities of mankind, by which we are to 



deny ourselves the knowledge of what the rest of 
the world knows, and what so great a part of the 
world both knows and feels. I do not deprecate any 
appearance which may give countenance to this as- 
persion from suspicion that any corrupt motive can 
influence this court; I deprecate it from knowing 
that hitherto we have moved within the narrow cir- 
cle of municipal justice. I am afraid, that, from the 
habits acquired by moving within a circumscribed 
sphere, we may be induced rather to endeavor at 
forcing Nature into that municipal circle than to en- 
large the circle of national justice to the necessities 
of the empire we have obtained. 

This is the only thing which does create any doubt 
or difficulty in the minds of sober people. But there 
are those who will not judge so equitably. Where 
two motives, neither of them perfectly justifiable, 
may 'o assigned, the worst has the chance of being 
preferred. If, from any appearance of chicane in the 
court, justice should fail, all men will say, better there 
were no tribunals at all. In my humble opinion, it 
would be better a thousand times to give all com- 
jilainants the short answer the Dey of Algiers gave 
a British ambassador, representing certain grievances 
suffered by the British merchants, — " My friend," 
(as the story is related by Pr. Shaw,) " do not you 
know that my subjects are a band of robbers, and that 
I am their captain ? " — better it would be a thousand 
times, and a thousand thousand times more manly, 
than au hypocritical process, which, under a pretended 
reverence to punctilious ceremonies and observances 
of law, abandons mankind without help and resource 
to all the desolating consequences of arbitrary power. 
The conduct and event of this cause will put au end 



to such doubts, wherever they may be entertamed. 
Your Lordsliips will exercise the great plenary powers 
with which you are invested iu a manner that will 
do honor to the protecting justice of this kingdom, 
that will completely avenge the great people who are 
subjected to it. You will not suffer your proceedings 
to be squared by any rules but by their necessities, 
and by that law of a common nature which cements 
them to us and us to them. The reports to the con- 
trary have been spread abroad with uncommon indus- 
try ; but they will be speedily refuted by the humanity, 
simplicity, dignity, and nobleness of your Lordships' 

Having said all that I am instructed to say concern- 
ing the process which the House of Commons has 
used, concerning the crimes which they have chosen, 
concerning the criminal upon whom they attach the 
crimes, and concerning the evidence which they mean 
to produce, I am now to procued to open that part of 
the business which falls to my share. It is rather an 
explanation of the circumstances than an enforcement 
of the crimes. 

Your Lordships of course will be apprised that this 
cause is not what occurs every day, in the ordinary 
round of municipal affairs, — that it has a relation to 
many things, that it touches many points in many 
places, which are wholly removed from the ordinary 
beaten orbit of our English affairs. In other affairs, 
every allusion immediately meets its point of refer- 
ence ; nothing can be started that does not immediate- 
ly awaken your attention to something in your own 
laws and usages which you meet with every day in 
the ordinary transactions of life. But here you are 



caught, as it were, into another world ; you are to 
Zfi^^e way pioneered before you. As the sulyect 
is new it must be explained ; as it is intncato as weU 
as ne;, that explanation can bo only comparative^ 
short: and therefore, knowing your Lordships to bo 
possessed, along with all other judicia vrtucs of the 
first and foundation of them all, judical patience, I 
hope thai you will not grudge a few hours to the ex- 
planation of that which has cost the Commons four- 
teen yeais' assiduous application to acquire,- that 
your Lordships will not disdain to grant a few hours 
to what has cost the people of Lidia upwards of thirty 
years of their innate, inveterate, hereditary patience 
to endui'O. 

My Lords, the powers ^hich Mr. Hastings is charged 
with having abused are the powers delegated to h.m 
by the East India Company. The East Lidia Com- 
pany itself acts under two very dissimilar sorts of 
Lvers, derived from two sources very remote from 
each other. The first source of its power is under 
charters which the crown of Great Britaia was au- 
thorized by act of Parliament to grant; ttie other is 
from several charters derived from the Emperor of 
the Moguls, the person in whose dominions they were 
chiefly conversant, -particularly that great charter 
by which, in the year 1765, they acquired the high- 
.tcwardship of the kii.gdoms of Bengal, Bahar, and 
Orissa Under those two bodies of charters, the l<.ast 
India Company, and all their servants, are authorized 

to act. , .. . n *K^ 

As to those of the first descnption, it is from the 
British charters that they derive the capacity by which 
thev are considered as a public body, or at all capa- 


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ble of any public function. It is from thence they 
acquire the capacity to take from any power whatso- 
ever any other charter, to acquire any other offices, 
or to hold any other possessions. This, being the 
root and origin of their power, renders them respon- 
sible to the party from whom all their immediate 
and consequential powers are derived. As they have 
emanated fl-om the supreme power of this kingdom, 
the whole body and the whole train of their servants, 
the corporate body as a corporate body, individuals 
as individuals, are responsible to the high justice of 
this kingdom. In delegating great power to the East 
India Company, this kingdom has not released its 
sovereignty ; on the contrary, the responsibility of the 
Company is increased by the greatness and sacred- 
ness of the powers that have been intrusted to it. 
Attempts have been made abroad to circulate a no- 
tion that the acts of the East India Company and 
t'leir servants are not cognizable here. I hope on 
this occasion your Lordships will show that this na- 
tion never did give a power without annexing to it a 
proportionable degree of responsibility. 

As to their other powers, the Company derives 
them from the Mogul empire by various charters 
from that crown, and from the great magistrates of 
that crown, and particularly by the Mogul charter of 
1765, by which they obtained the dewanny, that is, the 
office of lord higli-steward, of the kingdoms of Ben- 
gal, Bahar, and Orissa. By that charter they bound 
themselves (and bound inclusively all their servants) 
to perform all the duties belonging to that new office, 
and to be held by all the ties belonging to that new 
relation. If the Mogul empire had existed in its vig- 
or, they would have been bound, under that respon- 



sibility, to observe the laws, rights, usages, and cus- 
touis of the natives, and to pursue their benefit in all 
things : for this duty was inherent in the nature, in- 
stitution, and purpose of the office which they re- 
ceived. If the power of the sovereign from whom 
they derived these powers should by any revolution 
in human affairs be annihilated or suspended, their 
duty to the people below them, which was created 
under the Mogul charter, is not annihilated, is not 
even suspended; and for their responsibility in the 
performance of that duty, they are thrown back up- 
on that country (thank God, not annihilated) from 
whence their original power, and all subsequent de- 
rivative powers, have flowed. When the Company 
acquired that high office in India, an English corpo- 
ration became an integral part of the Mogul empire. 
When Great Britain virtually assented to that grant 
of office, and afterwards took advantage of it, Great 
Britain guarantied the performance of all its duties. 
Great Britain entered into a virtual act of union with 
that country, by which we bound ourselves as secu- 
rities to prasorve the people in all the rights, laws, 
and liberties which their natural, original sovereign 
was bound to support, if he had been in condition to 
support them. By the disposition of events, the two 
duties, flowing from two different sources, are now 
united in one. The people of India, therefore, come 
in the name of the Commons of Great Britain, but in 
their own light, to the bar of this House, before the 
supreme royal justice of this kingdom, from whence 
originally all the powers under which they have 
suffered were derived. 

It may be a little necessary, when we are stating 
the powers the Company have derived from their 


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tS I 

charter, and which we state Mr. Hastings to havo 
abused, to state in as short aud as comprehensive 
words as I can (for the matter is large indeed) what 
the constitution of that Company is, — I mean chiefly, 
what it is in reference to its Indian service, the great 
theatre of the abuse. Your Lordships will naturally 
conceive that it is not to inform you, but to revive 
circumstances in your memory, that I enter into this 

You will therefore recollect, that the East India 
Company had its origin about the latter end of the 
reign of Elizabeth, a period of projects, when all sorts 
of commercial adventures, companies, aud monopo- 
lies were in fashion. At that time the Company was 
constituted with extensive powers for increasing the 
commerce and the honor of this country ; because in- 
creasing its commerce, without increasing its honor 
and reputation, would have been thought at that time, 
and will be thought now, a bad bargain for the coun- 
try. The powers of the Company were, under that 
charter, merely commercial. By degrees, as the the- 
atre of operation was distant, as its intercourse was 
with many great, some barbarous, and all of them 
armed nations, nations in which not only the sover- 
eign, but the subjects, were armed, it was found neces- 
sary to enlarge their powers. The first power they 
obtained was a power of naval discipline in their 
ships, — a power which has been since dropped ; the 
next was a power of law martial ; the next was a pow- 
er of civil, and, to a degree, of criminal jurisdiction, 
within their own factories, upon their own people and 
their own servants ; the next was (and here was a 
stride indeed) the power of peace and war. Those 
high and almost incommunicable prerogatives of sot- 

r'^f Ii 

A i:\ 



ereigiity, which were hardly ever known before to 
be parted with to any subjects, and which in several 
states were not wholly intrusted to the prince or head 
of the commonwealth himself, were ^ven to the East 
India Company. That Company acquired these pow- 
ers about the end of the reign of Charles the Second ; 
and they were afterwards more fully, as well as more 
legally, given by Parliament after the Revolution. 
From this time, the East India Company was no 
longer merely a mercantile company, formed for the 
extension of the British commerce : it more nearly 
resembled a delegation of the whole power and sov- 
ereignty of this kingdom sent into the East. From 
that time the Company ought to be considered as a 
subordinate sovereign power : that is, sovereign with 
regard to the objects which it touched ; subordinate 
with regard to the power from whence its great trust 
was derived. 

Under these successive arrangements things took a 
course very different from their usual order. A new 
disposition took place, not dreamt of in the theories 
of speculative politicians, and of which few examples 
in the least resembling it have been seen in the mod- 
ern world, none at all in the ancient. In other in- 
stances, a political body that acts as a commonwealth 
was first settled, and trade followed as a consequence 
of the protection obtained by pol'".ical power ; but here 
the course of affairs was reversed. The constitution 
cf the Company began in commerce and ended in 
empire. Indeed, wherever the sovereign powers of 
peace and war are given, there wants but lime and 
circumstance to make these powers supersede every 
other. The affairs of commerce will fall at last into 
their proper rank and situation. However primary in 


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II ! 
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their original intention, they will become secondary. 
The possession, thereforo, and the power of assertion 
of these great authorities coinciding with the im- 
proved state of Europe, with the improved state of 
arts in Europe, with the improved sta! ; of laws, and, 
what is much more material, the improved state of 
military discipline, more and more perfected every 
day with us, — universal improvement in Europe coin- 
ciding with the general decay of Asia, (for the proud 
day of Asia is passed,) this improvement coinciding 
■with the relaxation and dissol sition of the Mogul gov- 
ernment, with the decline of its warlike spirit, with 
the total disuse of the ancient strictness of the mili- 
tary discipline established by Tamerlane, the India 
Company came to be what it is, a great empire, car- 
rying on, subordinately, a great comnerce ; it became 
that thing which was supposed by the Roman law 
irreconcilable to reason and propriety, — eundem n&- 
gotiatorem et dominum: the same power became the 
general trader, the same power became the supreme 

In this exalted situation, the India Company, how- 
ever, still preserves traces of its original mercantile 
character. The whole exterior order of its political 
service is carried on upon a mercantile plan and 
mercantile principles. In fact, the East India Com- 
pany in Asia is a state in the disguise of a merchant. 
Its wliole service is a system of public offices in the 
disguise of a counting-house. Accordingly, the whole 
external order and series of the service, as I ob- 
sei'ved, is commercial ; the principal, the inward, tho 
real, is almost entirely political. 

Tliis system of the Company's service, its order 
and discipline, is necessary to be explained to your 




Lordships, that you may sec in what manner tho 
abuses have affected it. In the first place, all tho 
persons who go abroad in the Company's civil ser- 
vice enter as clerks in the counting-house, and are 
called by a name to correspond to it, — writers. In 
that condition they are obliged to serve five years. 
The second step is that of a factor, in which they 
are obliged to serve three years. The third step 
they take is that of a junior merchant, in which they 
arc obliged to serve three years more. At that i)e- 
riod they become senior merchants, which is the higli- 
est stage of advance in the Company's service, — a 
rank by which they had pretensions, before the 
year 1774, to the Council, to the succession of tlio 
Presidency, and to whatever other honors *he Com- 
pany has to bestow. 

The Company had, in its early times, established 
factories in certain places; which factories by de- 
grees grew to the name of Presidencies and Coun- 
cil, in proportion a- the power and influence of tho 
Company increased, and as the political began first 
to struggle with, and at, length to predominate over, 
the mercantile. In this form it contir.ued till tlio 
year 1773, when the legislature broke in, for proper 
reasons urging them to it, upon that order of the 
service, and appointed to the superior department 
persons who had no title to that place under tho 
ordinary usage of the service. Mr. >' astings and 
Mr. Barwell, whatever other titles they might have 
had, held solely under the act of Parliament nom- 
inating them to that authority; but in all other 
respects, except where the act and other subsequent 
acts have not broken in upon it, the whole course 
of the service remains upon the ancient footing, 











If '• 

1 . 



I i; 


that is, the commercial footing, as to the gradation 
aiid order of service. 

Your Lordships see here a regular series of gra. 
dation, which requires eleven years before any per- 
sons can arrive at the highest trusts and situations. 
You will therefore be astonished, when so long a 
probationary service was required, that effects very 
dilfercnt from those to be expected from long proba- 
tion have happened, and that in a much shorter time 
than those eleven years you have seen persons re- 
turning into this kingdom with affluent, with over- 
bearing fortunes. It will bo a great part of your 
inquiry, when we come before your Lordships to 
substantiate evidence against Mr. Hastings, to dis- 
cover how tliat order came to be so completely 
broken down and erased that scarce a trace of it 
for iny good purpose remains. Though I will not 
deny tnat that order, or that any order in a state, 
may be superseded by the ruling power, when great 
talents, upon pressing exigencies, are to be called 
forth, yet I must say the order itself was formed 
upon wise principles. It furnished the persons who 
were put in that course of probation with an oppor- 
tunity (if circumstances enabled them) of acquiring 
3xperience in busuiess of revenue, trade, and policy. 
It gave to those who watched them a constant in- 
spection of their conduct through all their progress. 
On the expectants of office it imposed the necessity 
of acquiring a character in proportion to their stand- 
ing, in order that all whicii they had gained by the 
good behavior of years sliould not be lost by the 
misconduct of an hour. It was a great substantial 
regulation. But scarce a trace of the true spirit of 
i\ remains to be discovered in Mr. Hastings's gov- 

lif. ■>! 



emmeut; for Mr. Hastings established offices, nay, 
whole systems of offices, and especially a system of 
offices in 1781, which being altogether new, none 
of the rules of gradation applied to them ; and he 
filled those offices in such a manner as suited best, 
not the constitution nor the spirit of the service, 
but his own particular views and purposes. The 
consequence has been, that persons in the most im- 
mature stages of life hcve been appointed to con- 
duct affiiirs which required the greatest maturity 
of judgment, *' "•"■ te^t possible temper and mod- 
eration. Effi : lly consequent have followed 
upon it. — 1 ; ' trouble your Lordships with 
any further .ons ^i» this system of grada- 

I must, however, remark, before I go further, that 
there is something in the representation of the East 
India Company in their Oriental territory different 
from that, perhaps, of any other nation that has ever 
transported any part of its power from one country 
to another. The East India Company in India is 
not properly a branch of the British nation: it is 
only a deputation of individuals. When the Tar- 
tars entered into China, when the Arabs and Tar- 
tars successively entered into Hindostan, when the 
Goths and Vandals penetrated into Europe, when 
the Normans forced their way into England, indeed, 
in all conquests, migrations, settlements, and colo- 
nizations, the new people came as the offset of a 
nation. The Company in India does not exist as 
a national colony. In effect and substance nobody 
can go thither that does not go in its service. The 
English in India are nothing but a seminary for the 
succession of officers. Th' ; are a nation of place- 

YOL. IX. S3 




: < 1 



men ; they are a commonwealth without a people ; 
they are a state made up wnolly of maglsf ates. 
There is nothing to be in propriety called people, to 
watch, to inspect, to balance against the power of 
office. The power of office, so far as the English na- 
tion is concerned, is the sole power in the country: 
the conseqaence of which is, that, being a kingdom 
of magistrates, what is commonly called the esprit du 
corps is strong in it. This spirit of the body pre- 
dominates equally in all its parts ; by which the 
members must consider themselves as having a com- 
mon interest, and that common interest separated 
both from that of the country which sent them out 
and from that of the country in which they act. No 
control upon them exists, — none, I mean, in persons 
who understand their language, who understand their 
manners, or can apply their conduct to the laws. 
Therefore, in a body so constituted, confederacy is 
easy, and has been general. Your Lordships are not 
to expect that that should happen in such a body 
which never happened in any body or corporation, 
— that is, that they should, in any instance, be a 
proper check and control upon themselves. It is not 
in the nature of things. The fundamental principle 
of the whole of the East India Company's system 
is monopoly, in some sense or other. The same 
principle predominates in the service abroad and 
the service at home ; and buih systems are united 
into one, animated with the same spirit, that is, 
with the corporate spirit. The whole, taken to- 
gether, is such as has not been seen in the exam- 
ples of the Moors, the Portuguese, the Spania-^s, the 
Romans, — in no old, in no recent examples. The 
Dutch may resemble it, but they have not an em- 





pire properly so denominated. By means of thii 
peculiar circumstance it has not been difficult for 
Mr. Hastings to embody abuse, and to put himself 
at the head of a regular system of corruption. 

Another circumstance in that service is deserving 
of notice. Except in tlie highest parts of all, the 
emoluments of office do not in any degree correspond 
with the trust, nor the nature if the office with its 
name. In other official sjstems, the stylo, in gouoral, 
is above the functior he-e H is the reverse- Under 
iie name of junior as 'hant, senior merchant, writer, 
and other petty appello* jns of the counting-house, 
you have magistrates of high dignity, you have ad- 
ministrators of revenues truly royal, you have judges, 
civil, and in some respects criminal, who pass judgment 
upon the greatest properties of a great country. The 
legal public emoluments that belong to them are very 
often so inadequate to the real dignity of the char- 
acter, that it is imposssible, almost absolutely impos- 
sible, for the subordinate parts of it, which, though 
subordinate, are stations of power, to exist, as Eng- 
lishmen, who look at a fortune to be onjoyec' at 
home as their ultimate object, and to exis , in a state 
of perfect incorruption in that service. 

In some parts of Europe, it is true that the greatest 
situations are often attended with but little emolu- 
ment ; yet still they are filled. Why ? Because rep- 
utation, glory, fame, the esteem, the love, the tears 
of joy which flow from happy sensibility, the honest 
applauses of a grateful country, sometimes pay the 
cares, anxieties, and toils which wait on great f itua- 
tions in the commonwealth ; and in thc!<e they pay 
in money what cannot be paid in fame and reputation. 
It is the reverse in the service of the India Company. 





I ij 





■ if 



Glory is noi 'lo lot of subordinated merit, — and all 
the subordinate parts of tlio gradation are officers 
who, in comparison with the offices and duties intrust- 
ed to them, are miserably provided for ; whereas the 
chief of each great Presidency has emoluments secur- 
ing him against every moiJe of temptation. But if 
this has not secured the head, we may easily judge 
how the members are to be coerced. Mr. Hastings, 
at the head of the service, with high legal emoluments, 
has fouled his hands and sullied his government with 
bribes. He has substituted oppression and tyranny 
in the place of legal government. With all that un- 
bounded, licentious power which he has assumed over 
the ptiblic revenues, instead of endeavoring to find a 
series of gradual, progressive, honorable, and ade- 
quate rewards for the persons who serve the public in 
the subordinate, but powerful situptions, he has left 
them to prey upon the people lout the smallest 
degree of control. In default of honest emolument, 
there is the unbounded license of power; and, aa 
one of th? honestest and ablest servants of the Com- 
pany said to me in conversation, the civil service of 
the Company resembled the military service of the 
Mahrattas, — little pay, but unbounded license to 
plunder. I do not say that some of the salaries given 
in India would not sound well here ; but when you 
consider the nature of the trusts, the digniiy of the 
situation, whatever the name of them may be, the 
powers that are granted, the hopes that every man 
has of establishing himself at home, I repeat, it is a 
source of infinite grievance, of infinite abuse : of which 
source of corrupt power we charge Mr. Hastings with 
having availed himself, in filling up the void of direct 
pay by finding out «^'\ countenancing every kind of 



oblique and unjuBt emolument; thougii it must be 
confessed tliat ho i» far from being solely guilty of 

this offence. 

Another circumstance which distinguishes the East 
India Company is the youth of the persons wIjo are 
employed in the system of that service. The servant* 
have almost universally been sent out to begin their 
progress and career iu active occupation, and in tlie 
exercise of high authority, at that period of life which, 
in all other places, has been employed in the courst. 
of a rigid education. To put the matter in a few 
words, — tlioy are transferred from slippery youtl. to 
perilous independence, from perilous independence to 
inordinate expectations, from inordinate expectations 
to boundless power. School-boys without tuton > i- 
nors without guardians, the world is let loose upon 
them with all its temptations, and they are let loose 
upon the world with all the powers that despotism 


It is further remarkable, these servants exercise 
what ycur Lordships are now exercising, high judicial 
powers, and they exercise them without the smallest 
study of any law, either general or municipal. It is 
made a sort of rule in the service, a rule confirmed 
even by the attempts thai were made to correct it, (I 
mean confirmed by Sir Elijah Imp' - 'vhen, under the 
auspices of Mr. Hastings, he und.* . ': to be legislator 
for India,) that the judicial character, tlie last in the 
order of legal progress, that to which all professional 
men look up as the crown of their labors, tliat ulti- 
xuate hope of men grown gray in professional practice, 
is among the first experimental situations of a Com- 
pany's servant. It is expressly said in that body of 
regulations to which I allude, that the office and sit- 


h ill 




uation of a judge of the Bewanny Courts of Adawlut 
is to be filled by the Junior servants of the Company ; 
and as the judicial emolument is not substantially 
equal to that of other situations, the oflSce of a judge 
is to be taken, as it were, in trantitu, as a passage 
to other officos not of a judicial nature. As soon, 
therefore, as a young man has supplied the defects of 
his education by the advantage of some experience, 
he is immediately translated to a totally diflferent of- 
fice ; and another young man is substituted, to loam, 
at the expense of the property of India, to fill a sit- 
uation which, when he may be qualified to fill, he is 
no longer to hold. 

It is in a great measure the same with regard to 
the other situations. They are the situations of great 
statesmen, which, according to the practice of the 
world, require, to fill properly, rather a large con- 
verse with men and much intercourse in life than 
deep study of books, — though that, too, has its emi- 
nent service. We know that in the habits of civilized 
life, in cultivated society, there is imbibed by men a 
good deal of the solid practice of government, of the 
true maxims of state, and everything that enables a 
man to serve his country. But these men are sent 
over to exercise functions at which a statesman here 
would tremble, without any theoretical study, and 
without any of that sort of experience which, in mixed 
societies of business and converse, form men gradu- 
ally and insensibly to great afiairs. Low cunning, in- 
trigue, and stratagem are soon acquired ; but manly, 
durable policy, which never sacrifices the general in- 
terest to a partial or momentary advantage, is not so 
cheaply formed in the human understanding. 
Mr. Hastings, in his defence before the House of 



Commons, and in the defences he has made before 
your Lordships, has lamented his own situation in 
this particular. It was much to be lamented, indeed. 
How far it will furnish justification, extenuation, or 
palliation of his conduct, when we come to examine 
that conduct, will be seen. 

These circumstances in the system have in a great 
degree vitiated and perverted what is in reality (and 
many things are in reality) excellent in it. They 
have rendered the application of all correctives and 
remedies to abuse, at best, precarious in their opera- 
tion. The laws that we have made, the covenants 
which the Company has obliged its servants to enter 
into, the occasional orders that have been given, at 
least ostensibly good, all have proved noxious to the 
country, instead of beneficial. 

To illustrate this point, I beg leave to observe to 
your Lordships, that the servants of the Company are 
obliged to enter into that service not only with an 
impression of the general duty which attaches upon 
all servants, but are obliged to engage in a specific 
covenant with their masters to perform all the duties 
described in that covenant (which are all the duties 
of their relation) under heavy penalties. They are 
bound to a repetition of these covenants at every step 
of their progress, from writer to factor, from factor to 
junior merchant, and from junior merchant to senior 
merchant. They ought, according to the rule, to re- 
new these covenants at these times by something (I 
speak without offence) which may be said to resem- 
ble confirmation in the Church. They are obliged 
to renew their obligation in particular to receive no 
gifts, gratuities, or presents whatsoever. 
This scheme of covenants would have been wise 



1 ^ 




■ \ 


1 1 






and proper, if it had belonged to a judicious order, 
and rational, consistent scheme of discipline. The 
orders of the Company have forbidden their servants 
to take any extraneous emoluments. The act of Par- 
liament has fulminated against them. Clear, positive 
laws, and clear, positive private engagements, have 
no exception of circumstances in them, no difference 
quoad majus et minus; but every one who offends 
against the law is liable to the law. The conse- 
quence is this: he who has deviated but an inch 
from the straight line, he who has taken but one 
penny of unlnr.rul emolument, (and all have taken 
many pennies of unlawful emolument,) does not 
dare to complain of the most abandoned extortion 
and cruel oppression in any of his fellow-servants. 
He who has taken a trifle, perhaps as the reward of 
a good action, is obliged to be silent, when he sees 
whole nations desolated around him. The great 
criminal at the head of the service has the laws in 
his hand; he is always able to prove the small of- 
fence, and crush the person who has committed it. 
This is one grand source of Mr. Hastings's power. 
After he had got the better of the Parliamentary 
commission, no complaint from any part of the ser- 
vice has appeared against Mr. Hastings. He is bold 
enough to state it as one presumption of his merit, 
that there has been no such complaint. No such 
complaint, indeed, can exist. The spirit of the corps 
would of itself almost forbid it, — to which spirit 
an informer is the most odious and detestable of all 
characters, and is hunted down, and has always been 
hunted down, as a common enemy. But here is a 
new security. "Who can complain, or dares to ac- 
cuse? The whole service is irregular: nobody is 




free from smaU offences; and, as I have said, the 
great offender can always crush the «^f «"«• 

If you examine the correspondence of Mr. Uast- 
inKS,you would imagine, from many expressions very 
deUberately used by him, that the Company's service 
trmade out of the very filth and dregs of human 
corruption ; but if you examine his conduct towards 
the corrupt body he describes, you would imagine he 
had lived in the speculative schemes of visionary per- 
fection. He was fourteen years at the head of that 
service; and there is not an instance, no, not one 
single instance, m which he endeavored to detect cor- 
ruption, or that he ever, in any one smgle instance 

attempted to punish it; but «\^^J«1« f^.™' ^^^ 
that whole mass of enormity which he attributes to it, 

slept, as it were, at once under Jf ^--f^VZ to 
tection : under his protection, if they did not dare to 
move against him; under terror, from his power to 
pluck out individuals and make a public example of 
Lm, whenever he thought fit. And therefore that 
service, under his guidance and influence, was, be- 
vond even what its own nature disposed it to, a ser- 
vice of confederacy, a service of connivance, a service 
composed of various systems of guilt, of wlucli M . 
Hastings was the head and the protector. But this 
general connivance lie did not thnik sufficient to 
secure to him the general support of the Indian in- 
terest. He went further. We shall prove to your 
Lordships, that, when the Company were driven by 
shame, not by inclination, to order several prosecu- 
tions against delinquents in their service, Mr. Hast 
• ings, dh-ectly contrary to the duty of Ins office, di- 
roctly contrary to the express and positive law of 
the Court of Directors, which law Parliament had 


■ ■ 









*:i A 

bound upon him as his rule of action, not satisfied 
with his long tacit connirance, ventured, before he 
left his goTerumeut, and among his last acts, to pass 
a general act of pardon and indemnity, and at once 
ordered the whole body of the prosecutions directed 
by his masters, the Company, to be discharged. 

Having had fourteen years' lease of connivance to 
bestow, and giving at the end a general release of all 
suits and actions, he now puts himself at the head of 
a vast body enriched by his bounties, connivances, and 
indemnities, and expects the support of those whom 
he had thus fully rewarded and discharged from the 
pursuit of the laws. You will find, in the course of 
this bushiess, that, when charges have been brought 
against him of any bribery, corruption, or other mal- 
versation, his course has been to answer little or 
nothing to that specific bribery, corruption, or mal- 
versation : his way has been to call on the Court of 
Directors to inquire of every servant who comes to 
Europe, and to say whether there was any one man 
in it that will give him an ill word. He has put 
himself into a situation in which he may always safe- 
ly call to his character, and will always find himself 
utterly incapable of justifying his conduct. 

So far I have troubled your Lordships with the 
system of confederacy and connivance, which, under 
his auspices, was the vital principle of almost the 
whole service. There is one member of the service 
which I have omitted : but whether I ought to have 
put it first, or, as I do now, last, I must confess I 
am at some loss; because, though it appears to bo 
the lowest (if any regular) part of the service, it is 
by far the most considerable and the most efiicieni, 
without a full consideration and explanation of which 




hardly any part of the conduct of Mr. Hastings, and 
of many others that may ba in his situation, can be 

fully understood. 

I have given your Lordships an account of wnterb, 
factors, merchants, who exercise the office of judges, 
lord chancellors, chancellors of the exchequer, minis- 
ters of state, and managers of great revenues, liut 
there is another description of men, of more impor- 
tance than them all, a description you have often 
heard of, but which has not been sufficiently ex- 
plained : I mean the hawxn. When the Company s 
service was no more than mercantile, and the ser- 
vants were generally unacquainted with the countrj . 
they used the intervention of certain factors among 
the natives, which were called hanian»: we cahed 
them so, because they were of fhe tribe or caste of ttje 
banians or merchants, -the Indians hems generally 
distributed into trades according to their tribes, rhe 
name still contuiues, when the functions of the ban- 
ians are totally altered. The banian is knjwn by 
other appellations. He is called dewan, or steward; 
and, indeed, this is a lerm with more propriety ap- 
nlied to him in several of his functions. He is, by 
his name of office, the steward of the household of the 
European gentleman: he has the managemcut of his 
affairs, and the ordering of his servants. Ho is him- 
self a domestic servant, and generaUy chosen out ot 
that class of natives who, by being habituated to mis- 
ery and subjection, can submit to any orders, and are 
fit for any of the basest servi-ios. Trained under op- 
pression, (it is the true education,) they are at to op- 
press others. They serve an apprenticeship of servi- 
tude to qualify them for the trade of tyranny. They 
know aU the devices, all the Uttle frauds, all the arth 






i ! 


•' I !i, 

i ■ i H' 

fices and contrivances, the whole panoply of the de- 
fensive armor by which ingenious slavery secures it- 
self against the violence of power. They know all the 
lurking-holes, all the winding recesses, of the unfor- 
tunate ; and they hunt out distress and misery even 
to their last retreats. They have 6u£Fered ttiemselves ; 
but, far from being taught by those suflferings to ab- 
stain from rigor, they have only learned the methods 
of afflicting their fellow-slaves. They have the best 
intelligence of what is done in England. The mo- 
ment a Company's servant arrives in India, and his 
English connections are known to be powerful, some 
of that class of people immediately take possession 
of him, as if he were their inheritance. They have 
knowledge of the country and its afikirs ; they have 
money ; they have the arts of making money. The 
gentleman who comes from England has none of 
these; he enters into that world, as he enters into 
the world at large, naked. His portion is great sim- 
plicity, great indigence, and a strong disposition to 
relieve himself. The banian, once in possession, em- 
ploys his tyranny, not only over the native people 
of his country, but often over the master himself, 
who has little other share in the proceedings of his 
servant but in giving him the ticket of his name to 
mark that he is connected with and supported by an 
European who is himself well connected and support- 
ed at home. This is a commission which nothing 
can resist. From that moment forward it is not the 
Englishman, it is the black banian, that is the master. 
The nominal master often lives from his hand. We 
know how young men are sent out of this country ; 
we know how happy we are to hear soon that they 
are no longer a burden to their friends and parents. 





The banian knows it, too. He supplies the young 
servant with money. He has him under his power : 
first, from the necessity of employing such a man ; 
and next, (and this is the more important of the two,) 
he has that dreadful power over his master which 
every creditor has over his debtor. Actions the most 
abhorrent to his nature he must see done before his 
face, and thousands and thousands worse are lone m 
his absence, and he dare not complain. The banian 
extorts, robs, plunders, and then gives him just what 
proportion of the spoil he pleases. If the master 
Siould murmur, the very power that was sent over to 
protect the people of India from these very abuses, 
(the best things being perverted, when applied to un- 
known objects and put into unsuitable situations,) 
the very laws of England, by making the recovery of 
debts more easy, infinitely increase the power of the 
banian over his master. Thus the Supreme Court 
of Justice, the destined corrector of all abuses, be- 
comes a collateral security for that abominable tyran- 
ny exercised by the moneyed banians over Europea-^s 
as well as the natives. So that, while we are here 
boasting of the British power in the East, we are m 
perhaps more than half our service nothing but the 
inferior, miserable instruments of the tyranny which 
the lowest part of the natives of India exercise, to 
the disgrace of the British authority, and to the rum 
of all that is respectable among their own countrymen. 
They have subverted the first houses, totally ruined 
and undone the country, cheated and defrauded the 
revenue, — the master a silent, sometimes a melan- 
choly spectator, until some office of high emolument 
has emancipated him. This has often been the true 
reason that the Company's servants in India, m or- 





J, ;- 






ij i. 



der to free themselves from this horrid and atrocious 
Benritude, are obliged to become instruments of aL- 
other tyranny, and must prostitute themselves to men 
in power, in order to obtain some office that may ena- 
ble them to escape the servitudes below, and enable 
them to pay their debts. And thus many have become 
the instruments of Mr. Hastings. 

These banl ms, or dewans, were originally among 
the lower castes in the country. But now, it is true, 
tliat, after seeing the power and profits of these men, 
— that there is neither power, profession, nor occupa- 
tion to be had, which a reputable person can exercise, 
but through that channel, — men of higher castes, 
and born to better things, have thrown themselves 
into that disgraceful servitude, have become menial 
servants to Englishmen, that they might rise by their 
degradation. But whoever they are, or of whatever 
birth, they have equally prostituted their integrity, 
they have equally lost their character ; and, once en- 
tered into that course of life, there is no difference 
between the best castes and the worst. That system 
Mr. Hastings confirmed, established, increased, and 
made the instrument of the most austere tyranny, of 
the basest peculations, and the most scandalous and 
iniquitous extortions. 

In the description I have given of banians a dis- 
tinction is to be made. Your Lordships must dis- 
tinguish the banians of the British servants in sub- 
ordhiate situations and the banians who are such 
to persons in higher authority. In the latter case 
the banian is in strict subordination, because he 
may always be ruined by his superior; whereas in 
the former it is always in his power to ruin his 
nominal superior. It was not through fear, but 




voluntarily, and not for the banian's purposes, but 
his own, Mr. Hastings has brought forward his ban- 
ian He seated him in the houses of tho principal 
uobility, and invested him with farms of the reve- 
nue; ha has given him enormous jobs; ho has put 
him over the heads of a nobility which, for their 
grandeur, antiquity, and dignity, might almost be 
matched with your Lordships. He has made him 
supreme ecclesiastical judge, judge even of the very 
castes, in the preservation of the separate rules and 
separate privileges of which that people exists. He 
who has dominion over the caste has an absolute pow- 
er over something more than life and fortune. 

Sach is that first, or last, (I know not which to 
call it,) order in the Company's service called a ban- 
ian. The mutieddiet, clerks, accountants, of Cal- 
cutta, generally fall under this description. Your 
Lordships wiU see hereafter the necessity of giving 
you, in the opening the case, an idea of the situation 
of a banian. You will see, as no Englishman, prop- 
erly speaking, acts by himself, that he must be made 
responsible for that person called his banian, -for 
the power he either uses under him, or the power he 
has acquired over him. The banian escapes, m the 
night of his complexion and situation, the inquiry 
that a white man cannot stand before in this country. 
Through the banians, or other black natives, a bad 
servant of the Company receives his bribes. Through 
them he decides falsely against the titles of htigants 
in the court of castes, or in the offices of pubhc 
registry. Through them Mr. Hastings has exercised 
oppressions which, I will venture to say, in his own 
name, in his own character, daring as he is, (aiid ho 
is the most daring criminal that ever existed,) he 


?' Ui^ 



noTor vould daro to practiite. Many, if not most, of 
the iniquities of his interior bad administration have 
been perpetrated through these banians, or other na- 
tive agents and confidants; and we shall show you 
that he is not satisfied with one of them, confiding 
few of his secrets to Europeans, and hardly any of 
his instruments, either native or European, knowing 
the secrets of each other. This is the system of 
banianisra, and of concealment, which Mr. Hastings, 
instead of eradicating out of the service, has propa- 
gated by example and by support, and enlarged by 
converting cto'i Europeans into that dark and insid- 
ious character. 

I have explained, or endeavored to explain, to your 
Lordships these circumstances of the true spirit, gen- 
ius, and character, more than the ostensible institu- 
tions of tlio Company's service : I now shall beg leave 
to bring before you one institution, taken from the 
mercantile constitution of the Company, so excellent, 
that I will venture to say that human wisdom has 
never exceeded it. In this excellent institution the 
counting-house gave lessons to the state. The active, 
awakened, and enlightened principle of self-interest 
will provide a better system for the guard of that 
interest than the cold, drowsy wisdom of those who 
provide for a good out of themselves ever contrived 
for the public. The plans sketched by private pru- 
dence for private interest, the regulations by mercan- 
tile men for their mercantile purposes, when they can 
be applied to the discipline and order of the state, 
produce a discipline and order which no state should 
be ashamed to copy. The Company's mercantile reg- 
ulations are admirably fitted for the government of a 
remote, large, disjointed empire. As merchants, hav- 

•M ' 




ing factors abroad in distant parts of the world, they 
hare obliged them to a minuteness and strictness of 
register, and to a regularity of correspondence, which 
no state has ever used in the same degree with regard 
to its public ministers. The Company has made it 
a fundamental part of their constitution, that almost 
their whole government shall be a written govern- 
ment. Your Lordships will observe, in the course 
of the proceeding, the propriety of opening fully to 
you this circumstance in the government of India,— 
tliat is, that the Company's government is a govern- 
ment of writing, a government of record. The strict- 
est court of justice, in its proceeding, is not more, 
perhaps not so much a court of record as the India 
Company's executive service is, or ought to be, in all 
its procet dings. 

In the first place, they oblige their servants to keep 
a journal or diary of all their transactions, public and 
private: they are bound to do this by an express 
covenant. They oblige them, as a corrective upon 
tliat diary, to keep a letter-book, in which all their 
letters are to be regularly entered. And they are 
bound by the same covenant to produce all tliose 
books upon requisition, although they t-hould be 
mixed with affairs concerning their own private 
negotiations and transactions of commerce, or their 
closest and most retired concerns in private life. 
But as the great corrective of all, they have con- 
trived that every proceeding in public council shall 
be written, — no debates merely verbal. Tlie argu- 
ments, first or last, are to be in writing, and recorded. 
All other bodies, the Houses of Lords, Commons, Privy 
Council, Cabinet Councils for secret state delibera- 
tions, enter only resolves, decisions, and final resolu- 

▼0I» IX. 


! ■ , 


I » 




V. i 




tioni of affairs: the argument, the discussion, the dis- 
sent, docs very rarely, if at all, appear. But the Com- 
pany ha» proceeded much further, and done much 
more wisely, because they proceeded upon mercan- 
tile principles ; and they hare provided, either by or- 
ders or course of office, that all shall bo written, — 
the proposition, the argument, the dissent. This is 
not c ifined to their great Council; but this order 
ought to bo observed, as I com ive, (and I see con- 
siderable traces of it in practice,) in every Provincial 
Council, whilst the Provincial Councils existed, and 
even down to the minutest ramification of their ser- 
vice. These books, in a progression from the lowest 
Councils to the highest Presidency, are ordered to bo 
transmitted, duplicate and triplicate, by every ship 
that sails to Europe. On this system an able servant 
of the Company, and higli in tbeir service, has re- 
corded his opinion, and strongly expressed his senti- 
ments. Writing to tlie Court of Directors, he says, 
"It ought to be remembered, that the basis upoa 
which you rose to power, and have been able to stand 
the shock of repeated convulsions, has been the ac- 
curacy and simplicity of mercantile method, which 
makes every transaction in your service and every 
expenditure a matter of record." 

My Lords, tliis method not only must produce to 
them, if strictly obser'"i, a more accurate idea of the 
nature of their affairs and the nature of their expendi- 
tures, but it must afford them no trivial opportunity 
and means of knowing the true characters of their 
e.^rvants, their capacities, their ways of thinking, the 
turn and bias of their minds. If well employed, and 
but a little improved, the East India Company pos- 
sessed an advantage unknown before to the chief of a 

.^ Si 




remote goTernment. In the most roraote parts of the 
world, and in the minutest parts of a remote service, 
everything came before the principal with a domestic 
accuracy anH local familiarity. It was in the power 
of u '^irector, sitting in London, to form an accurate 
judgment of every incident that happened upon tlie 
Ganges and the Oogra. 

The use of this recorded system did not consist 
only in the facility of discovering what the nature of 
their affairs and the character and capacity of their 
servants was, but it furnished the means of detect- 
ing their misconduct, frequently of proving it too, 
and of producing the evidence of it judicially under 
their own hands. For your Lordships must have 
observed that it is rare indeed, that, in a continued 
course of evil practices, any uniform method of pro- 
vceding will serve the purposes of the deling :ent. 
Innocence is plain, direct, and simple: guilt is a 
crooked, intricate, inconstant, and various thing. 
The iniquitous job of to-day may be cohered by 
specious reasons ; but when the job of iniquity of 
to-morrow succeeds, the reasons that have colored 
the first crime may expose the second malversation. 
The man of fraud falls into contradiction, prevarica- 
tion, confusion. This hastens, this facilitates, convic- 
tion. Besides, time is not allowed for corrupting the 
records. They are flown out of their hands, they are 
in Europe, they are safe in the registers of the Com- 
pany, perhaps they are under the eye of Parliament, 
before the writers of them have time to invent an 
excuse for a direct contrary conduct to tliat to which 
their former pretended principles applied. This is a 
great, a material part of the constitution of the Com- 
pany. My Lords, I do not tl .nk it to bo much apolo- 














M' ^ 




4] 4 


gized for, if I repeat, that this is the fundamental reg- 
ulation of that service, and which, if preserved in the 
first instance, as it ought to be, in official practice in 
India, and then used as it ought to be in England, 
would afford such a mode of governing a great, for- 
eign, dispersed empire, as, I will venture to say, few 
countries ever possessed, even in governing the most 
limited and narrow jurisdiction. 

It was the great business of Mr. Hastings's policy to 
subvert this great political edifice. His first mode of 
subverting it was by commanding the public minis- 
ters, paid by the Company, to deliver their corre- 
spondence upon the most critical and momentous af- 
fairs to him, in order to be suppressed and destroyed 
at his pleasure. To support him in this plan of 
spoliation, he has made a mischievous distinction in 
public busir°iss between public and private corre- 
spondence. The Company's orders and covenants 
made none. There are, readily I admit, thousands 
of occasions in which it is not proper to divulge pro- 
miscuously a private correspondence, though on pub- 
lic affairs, to the world ; but there is no occasion in 
which it is not a necessary duty, on requisition, to 
communicate your correspondence to those who form 
the paramount government, on whose interests and 
on whose concerns and under whose authority this 
correspondence has been carried on. The very same 
reasons which require secrecy with regard to others 
demand the freest communication to them. But Mr. 
Hasting- -s established principles of confidence and 
secrecy to *^ards himself which have cut off all confi- 
dence between the Directors and their ministers, and 
effectually kept them at least out of the secret of their 
own affairs. 





Without entering into all the practices by which 
he has attempted to maim the Company's records, 
I shall state one more to your Lordships, — that is, 
his avowed appointment of spies and under-agents, 
who shall carry on the real state business, while there 
are public and ostensible agents who are not in the 
secret. The correspondence of those private agents 
he holds in his own hands, communicates as he 
thinks proper, but most commonly withholds. There 
remains nothing for the Directors but the shell and 
husk of a dry, formal, official correspondence, which 
neither means anything nor was intended to mean 

anything. . , . , , u 

These are some of the methods by which he has 
defeated the purposes of the excellent institution of 
a recorded administration. But there are cases to bo 
brought before this court in which he has laid the axe 
at once to the root, -which was, by delegating out 
of his own hands a great department of the powers of 
the Company, which he was himself bound to exe- 
cute, to a board which was not bound to record their 
deliberations with the same strictness as he himself 
was bound. He appointed of his own usurped au- 
thority a board for the administration of the revenue, 
the members of which were expressly dispensed from 
recording their dissents, until they chose it ; and m 
that office, as in a great gulf, a most important part 
of the Company's transactions has been buried. 

Notwithstanding his unwearied pains in the work 
of spoliation, some precious fragments are left, which 
we ought infinitely to value, — by which we may 
learn, and lament, the loss of what he has destroyed. 
If it were not for those inestimable fragments and 
wrecks of the recorded government which have been 



■jiL ..L .1 r mmmf¥m 




mf ' ■ .' 

M ■ 



ii k 

, tvva 



saved from the destruction which Mr. Hastings in- 
tended for them all, the most shameful enormities 
that have ever disgraced a government or harassed 
a people would only be known in this country by se- 
cret whispers and unauthenticated anecdotes ; the dis- 
gracers of government, the vexers and afflicters of 
mankind, instead of being brought before an awful 
public tribunal, might have been honored with the 
highest distinctions and rewards their country has 
to bestow ; and sordid bribery, base peculation, iron- 
handed extortion, fierce, unrelenting tyranny, might 
themselves have been invested with those sacred robes 
of justice before which this day they have cause t*" 

Mr. Hastings, sensible of what he suffers from this 
register of acts and opinions, has endeavored to dis- 
credit and ruin what remains of it. He refuses, in 
his defence to the House of Commons, in letters 
to the Court of Directors, in various writings and 
declarations, he refuses to be tried by his own re- 
corded declarations ; he refuses to be bound by his 
own opinions, delivered under his own hand. He 
knows that he and the record cannot exist together. 
He knows that what remains of the written constitu- 
tion which he has not destroyed is enough to destroy 
him. He claims a privilege of systematic inconstan- 
cy, a privilege of prevarication, a privilege of contra- 
diction, — a privilege of not only changing his con- 
duct, but the principles of his conduct, whenever it 
suits his occasions. But I hope your Lordships will 
t^how the destroyers of that wise constitution, and 
the destroyers of those records which are to be the 
securities against malversation in office, the discover- 
ers and avengers of it, that whoever destroys the dis- 




coverer establishes the iniquity ; that, therefore, your 
Lordships will hiad him to his own declarations, giv- 
en on record under his own hand ; that you will say 
to this unfaithful servant of the Company, what was 
said to another unfaithful person upon a far less oc- 
casion by a far greater authority, " Out of tliy own 
mouth wUl I judge thee, thou wicked servant." 

Having gone through what I have been instructed 
might be necessary to state to your Lordships cou- 
cerning the Company's constitution, (I mean fne real 
inside, and not the shell of its constitution,)— havnig 
stated the abuses that existed in it,— having stated 
how Mr. Hastings endeavored to perpetuate and to 
increase and to profit of the abuse, and how he has 
systematically endeavored to destroy, and has in some 
instances in fact destroyed, many things truly excel- 
lent in that constitution, — if I have not wasted your 
time in explanation of matters that you are already 
well acquainted with, I shall next beg leave to state 
to you the abuse in some particulars of the other 
part of the public authority which the Company ac- 
quired over the natives of India, in virtue of the royal 
charter of the present Mogul emperor, in the year 
1766 [1765?]. 

My Lords, that you may the better judge of the 
abuse Mr. Hastings has made of the powers vested m 
him, it will be expedient to consider a little who the 
people are to whose prejudice he has abused these 
powers. I shall explain this point with as much brev- 
ity as is cons-: ^ent with the distinctness with which I 
mean to bring >e wliole before your Lordships; and 
I bog to observe to you that this previous discourse, 
rather explanatory than accusatorial, (if I may use 













. t. 






I } si 



the expression,) is meant rather to elucidate the na- 
ture of the matter to come before you iu regular 
charges than as proof of the charges themselves. 

I know that a good deal of latitude is allowed to 
advocates, when opening a cause in a private court, 
to indulge themselves in their narratives leading to 
the charges they intend to bring. They are not al- 
ways called to the strictest account for such prefatory 
r aer, because the court, when it comes to judge, 
sifts and distinguishes it from the points to be strictly 
proved, and on whose merits the cause relies. But 
I wish your Lordships to know, that, with the high 
opinion I have of your gravity, (and it is impossible 
for a man to conceive a higher,) and sensible of the 
weight of those I represent at this place, namely, 
the Commons of Great Britain, I should be sorry 
that any one substantial fact, even in this explana- 
tory opening, or even the color of the fact, should be 
alleged, which, when called upon, I should not be 
ready to make good to you by proof, — I mean, by 
proof adapted to its nature : public opinion, by evi- 
dence of public opinion ; by record, that to which 
record is applicable ; by oral testimony, things to 
which oral testimony alone can be produced ; and, 
last of all, that which is matter of historic proof, by 
historic evidence. This I hope to do with the usual 
allowance to errors and mistakes, which is the claim 
of human infirmity. 

Then, my Lords, two distinct people inhabit India. 
Two sorts of people inhabit the same country, as to- 
tally distinct from each other, in characters, lives, 
opinions, prejudices, and manners, as the inhabitants 
of countries most remote from each other. For both 
of these descriptions Mr. Hastings was bound to pro- 


Tide equally, agreeable to the terms of the charter 
which the Company received from the lawful govern- 
- T power of that country: a charter received at its 
o4 solicitation; a charter not forced upon us by a 
superior power, but given at the immediate sohcita- 
tion of the principal servants belonging to the Com- 
pany ; a charter solemnly accepted by the Company, 
Ld by them, I am very sorry to say, little regarded 
-or, at least, little regarded by their principal ser- 

^^'mv Lords, the first description of people who are 
subject d virtually to the British empire through 
those mediums which I have described to you are 
the original inhabitants of Hindostan who have m 
all time, and beyond all the eras which we use, ( I 
mean always the two grand eras excepted,) been 
aboriginal inhabitants and proprietors of that cou 
try Iwith manners, religion, ci tcms, and usage, 
appropriated to themselves, and little rcsc^^bling 
those of the rest of mankind. This description of 
men is commonly called Gentoos. The system and 
"rinciple of that government is locality. Their laws, 
tlieir manners, their religion are all local. 

ill legislator, whoever he was, (for who he was 
is a matter lost in the mists of a most obscure an- 
tiquity,) had it as » great leading prniciple of his 
poUcy cuanect ople with their soi . Accord- 

Ll/ by one o ^e anomalies .Inch a larger 

acquaintance with our species dau, ^i-.^;-' aiid 
which perhaps an attentive reflection -ig^t explam 
in the nature of man, this aboriginal people of India, 
-who are the softest in their manners of any of our 
race, approaching almost to feminine tenderness, -- 
who are formed constitutionally benevolent, and, m 

( , 




• • ' ' 

^ )' 

's ",< ' 



:mpeachhent of wabren UAsimos. 

many particulars, made to fill a larger circle of beneT- 
oleiice than our morals take in, — who extend their 
good-will to the whole animal creation, — these people 
are, of all nations, the most unalliable to any other 
part of mankind. They cannot, the highest orders of 
them, at least, cannot, come into contact with any oth- 
er. That bond which is one of the chief instruments 
of society, and which, supporting the individual, con- 
nects the species, can have no existence with them : I 
mean the convivial bond. That race can be held to no 
other by that great link of life. No Hindoo can mix 
at meals even with those on whom he depends for the 
meat he sats. This circumstance renders it difficult 
for us to enter with due sympathy into their concerns, 
or for them to enter into ours, even when we meet 
on the same ground. But there are other circum- 
stances which render our intercourse, in our mutual 
rel 'in, very full of difficulty. The sea is between 
us. The mass of that element, which, by appearing 
to disconnect, unites mankind, is to them a forbidden 
road. It is a great gulf fixed between you and them, 
— not so much that elementary gulf, but that gulf 
which manners, opinions, and laws have radicated in 
the very nature of the people. None of their high 
castes, without great danger to his situation, religion, 
rank, and estimation, can ever pass the sea ; and this 
forbids, forever, all direct communication between that 
country and this. That material and affecting cir- 
cumstance, my Lords, makes it ten times more neces- 
sary, since they cannot come to us, to keep a strict 
eye upon all persons who go to them. It imposes up- 
on us a stricter duty to guard with a firm and pow- 
erful vigilance those whose principles of conscience 
weaken their principles of self-defence. If we un- 


iBini T - 



dertake to govern the inhabitauts of such a coun- 
try we must govern them upon their own pnncipleH 
and maxims, and not upon ours. We must not thuik 
to force them into the narrow circle of our ideas; we 
must extend ours to take in their system of opui- 
ions and rites, and tlie necessities whicli result from 
both: all change on their part is absolutely imprac^ 
ticable. We have more versatility of character and 
manners, and it is we who must conform. We know 
what the emoire of opinion is in human nature. 1 
had almost said that the law of opinion was human 
nature itself. It is, however, the strongest prmciple 
in the composition of the frame of the human mmd ; 
and more of the happiness and unhappiness of man- 
kind resides in that inward principle than in all ex- 
ternal circumstances put together. But if such is 
the empire of opinion even amongst us, it has a pure, 
unrestrained, complete, and despotic power amongst 
them The variety of balanced opinions m our minds 
weakens the force of each : for in Europe, sometimes, 
the laws of religion differ the laws of the land; 
sometimes the laws of the land differ from our laws 
of honor; our laws of honor are full of caprice, dif- 
fering from those other laws, and sometimes differ- 
iu<r from themselves: but there the laws of religion, 
the laws of the land, and the laws of honor are all 
united and consolidated in one invariable system, and 
bind men by eternal and indissoluble bonds to the 
lules of what, amongst them, is called \m caste 

It may be necessary just to state to your Lordships 
what a caste is. The Gentoo people, from the oldest 
time, have been distributed into various orders, al 
of them hereditary: these family orders are called 
castes; these castes are the fundamental part of the 




1 ! i 





i' ^ 



lil^^i i 

constitution of the Gentoo commonwealth, both in 
their church and in their state. 

Your Lordships are born to hereditary honors in 
the chief of your houses ; the rest mix with the peo- 
ple. With the Gentoos, they who are born noble can 
never fall into any second rank. They are divided 
into four orders, — the Brahmins, the Chittery, the 
Bice, and the Soodur, with many subdivisions in each. 
Au eternal barrier is placed between them. The 
higher cannot pass into the lower ; the lower cannot 
rise into the higher. They have all their appropri- 
ated rank, place, and situation, and their appropriated 
religion too, which is essentially different in its rites 
and ceremonies, sometimes in its object, in each of 
those castes. A man who is born in the highest caste, 
which at once unites what would be tantamount in 
this country to the dignity of the peerage and the 
ennobled sanctity of the episcopal character, — the 
Brahmin, who sustains these characters, if he loses 
his caste, does not fall into an inferior order, the 
Cliittery, the Bice, or the Soodur, but he is thrown at 
once out of all ranks of society. He is precipitated 
from the proudest elevation of respect and honor to a 
bottomless abyss of contempt, — from glory to infamy, 
— from purity to pollution, — from sanctity to profa- 
nation. No honest occupation is open to him ; his 
children are -o longer his children ; their parent loses 
tliat name ; the conjugal bond is dissolved. Pew sur- 
vive this most terrible of all calamities. To speak to 
an Indian of his caste is to speak : > him of his all. 

But the rule of caste has, with them, given one 
power more to fortune than the manners of any other 
nation v/erc ever known to do. For it is singular, 
the caste may be lost, not only by certain voluntary 




;;SgJk *--* 



crimes, but by certain involuntary sufferings, dis- 
Kraces, and pollutions, that are utterly out of their 
power to prevent. Those who have patiently submit 
led to imprisonment, -those who have not flinched 
from the scourge,- those who have been as unmoved 
as marble under torture, - those who have aughed 
»t the menaces of deatb itself, -have instantly given 
way when it has been attempted to subject them to 
any of those pollutions by which they lose caste. To 
this caste they are bound by all ' -ws of all descriptions, 
human and divine; aad inveterate usage has radi- 
cated it in them to a depth and with an adhesion with 
which no other known T)rejudice has been known to 
exist Tyranny is therefore armed against them with 
a greater variety of weapons than are found in its 

ordinary stores. 

This amongst a thousand other considerations, 
speaks 'to us in very authoritative language with what 
care and circumspection we ought to handle people 
60 delicate. In the course of this trial your Lord- 
ships will see with horror the use which Mr. Hast- 
ings made, through several of his wicked and abom- 
inable instruments, chosen from the natives them- 
selves of these superadded means of oppression. I 
shall prove, in the course of this trial, that he has 
put his own menial domestic servant, — a wretch to- 
tally dependent, — a wretch grossly ignorant, — the 
common instrument of his bribery and peculation,— 
he has enthroned him, I say, on the first seat of ec- 
clesiastical jurisdiction, which was to decide upon 
the castes of all those people, including their rank, 
their family, their honor, and their happiness here, 
and, in their judgment, their salvation hereafter. 
Under the awe of this power, no man dared to breathe 






.1 ,. 





« r '■ 

|wi| ■ 

|BW« 1% ' ^ |l,i; 

fJ!, ^ 


4 -:■ I 

a murmur against his tyrannj. Fortified in this secu- 
rity, he says, " Who corapluins of me ? " — " No, none 
of us dare complain of you," says the trembling Gen- 
too. " No ! your menial servant has my caste in his 
po^r." — I shall not trouble your Lordships with 
mentifflffhg others ; it was enough that Cantoo Baboo, 
and Ginga Govind Sing, names to which your Lord- 
ships are to be familiarized hereafter, — it is enough 
that thoe persons had the caste and character of all 
the people of Bengal in their hands. Tljrough them 
he has taken effectual security against all complaint. 
Your Lordships will hence discern how very necessary 
it is become that some other personage should inter- 
vene, should take upon him their representation, and 
by his freedom and his power should supply the de- 
fects arising from their servitude and their impotence. 
The Commons of Great Britain charge themselves with 
this character. 

My Lords, these Gentoo people are the original 
people of Hindostan. They are still, beyond compar- 
ison, the most numerous. Faults this nation may 
have ; but God forbid we should pass judgment upon 
people who framed their laws and institutions prior 
to our insect origin of yesterday! With all the 
faults of their nature and errors of their institutions, 
their institutions, which act so powerfully on their 
natures, have two material characteristics which en- 
title them to respect : first, grc^t force and stability ; 
and next, excellent moral and civil effects. 

Their stability has been proved by their holding on 
an uniform tenor for a duration commensurate to all 
the empires with which history has made us acquaint- 
ed ; and they still exist in a green old ago, with all 
the reverence of antiquity, and with all the passion 


f :. >',_;': 



that people have to novelty and change. Tli^ have 
Btood firm on their ancicc base ; they have cast 
their roots deep in their native soil, — perhaps be- 
cause they have never spread them anywhere else 
than in their native soil. Their blood, their opni- 
ions, and the soil of their country make one consist- 
ent piece, admitting no mixture, no adulteration, no 
improvement: accordingly, their religion has made 
no converts, their dominion has made no conquests; 
but in proportion as their laws and opinions were 
concentred within themselves, and hindered from 
spreading abroad, they have doubled their force at 
home. They have existed in spite of Mahomedan 
and Portuguese bigotry, -in sp'te of Tartarian and 
Arabian tyranny, -in spite of all the fury of succes- 
Rive foreign conquest, - in spite of a more formidable 
foe, the avarice of the English dominion. ^ 

I have spoken now, my Lords, of what their princi- 
pies are, tiieir la^^s and religious institutions, in point 
of force and stabiLty ; I have given instances of their 
force in the very circumstance in which all the insh- 
tutions of mankind in other respects show their weak- 
ncss They have existed, when the country has been 
otherwise subdued. Tliis alone furnis^.es full proof 
that there must be some powerful influence resulting 
from them beyond all our little fashionable theones 

upon such subjects. , „ . • ^-i ♦•„„„ 

The second consido- "on in the Gentoo institutions 
is their beneficial effects, moral and civil. The policy, 
civil or religious, or, as theirs is, composed of both, 
that makes a people happy and a state flourishing, 
(putting further and higher considerations out of the 
way, which are not now before us,) must undoub^ 
edly, so far as human cor. si derations prevail, be a pol- 

I I 






P,i -li 


1 1 

icy wisely conceived in any scheme of gorcrnnacnt. 
It is confirmed by all observation, that, where the 
Hindoo religion has been established, that country 
has been flourishing. Wo have seen some patterns 
remaining to this day. The very country wliicli is 
to be the subject of your Lordships' judicial inquiry 
is an instance, by an entire change of government, 
of the different effects resulting from the rapacity of 
a foreign hand, and the paternal, lenient, protecting 
arm of a native goveruioent, formed on the long con- 
nection of prejudice and power I siiall give you its 
ptato under the Hindoo government from a book 
written l)y a very old servant of tho Company, wliose 
authority is of the greater weight, as the very destruc- 
tion of all -">ieme of government is tlie great ob- 
ject of ti 

The auth 'olwell, divides the country of 

Bengal into ito ;nt provinces. He supposes 

what they then paid to the supreme government; 
he supposes what the country is capable of yielding ; 
and his project is, to change entirely the application 
of the revenues of the country, and to secure tlie 
whole into the hands of government. In enumer- 
ating these provinces, at last he comes to tlie prov- 
ince of Burdwan. 

" In truth," (says this author,) " it would bo al- 
most cruelty to molest this happy people ; for in tliis 
district are the only vestiges of the beauty, purity, 
piety, regularity, equity, and strictness of the ancient 
Hindostan government. Here the property as well 
as the liberty of the people are inviolate. Here no 
robberies are heard of, cither public or private. The 
traveller, either with or witliout merchandise, be- 
comes the immediate care of tlie government, which 




allots him guards, without any expense, to conduct 
him from stage to stage ; and those are accountable 
for the safety and accommodation of his pt^rson and 
effects. At the end of the first stage ho is deliv- 
ered over, with certain benevolent formalities, to the 
gtiards of the next, who, after interrogating the trav- 
eller as to the tisage he had received in his journey, 
dismiss the first guard with a written certificate 
of their behavior, and a receipt for the traveller 
and his effects ; which certificate and receipt are re- 
turnable to the commanding officer of tin first stage, 
who registers the same, and regularly reports it to 

the rajah. 

" In this form the traveller is passed through the 
country ; a:A if he only passes, he is not suffered to 
be at any expense for food, accommodation, or car- 
riage for his merchandise or baggage : but it is other- 
wise, if ho is permitted to make any residence in one 
place above three days, , nless occasioned by sickness, 
or any unavoidable accident. If anything is lost in 
this district, — for instance, a bag of money or other 
valuables, — the person who finds it hangs it upon the 
next tree, and gives notice to the nearest chowTcey, 
or pkco of guard, the officer of which orders imme- 
diate publication of the same by beat of tomtom, or 


These, my Lords, are the effects universally pro- 
duced by the Hindoo polity throughout that vast re- 
gion, before it was distorted and put out of frame by 
the barbarism of foreign conquests. Some choice, 
reserved spots continued to flourish xmder it to the 
year 1756. Some remained till Mr. Hastings obtained 
the means of utteily defacinj them. Such was the 
prospect of Benares under the happy government of 

VOL. IX. S* 






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Bulwant Sing. Such was the happy state of the 
same Benares in the happy days of Cheyt Sing, until, 
in the year 1781, Mr. Hastings introduced Ma reform 
into that country. 

Having stated the general outline of the manners 
of the original people of Hindostan, having stated 
the general principles of their policy, which either 
prohibit connection, or oblige us to a connection very 
different from what we have hitherto used towards 
them, I shall leave it to your Lordships' judgment 
whether you will suffer such fair monuments of wis- 
dom and benevolence to be defaced by the rapacity 
of your governors. I hope I have not gone out of 
my way to bring before you any circumstance rela- 
tive to the Gentoo religion and manners, further than 
as they relate to the spirit of our government over 
them ; for though there never was such food for the 
curiosity of the human mind as is found in the man- 
ners of this people, I pass it totally over. 

I wish to divide this preliminary view into six 
periods ; and your Lordships will consider that of 
the Hindoos, which I have now mentioned, as the 
first era. 

The second era is an era of great misfortune to 
that country, and to the world in general : I mean, 
the time of the prophet Mahomed. The enthusiasm 
which animated his first followers, the despotic power 
which religion obtained through that enthusiasm, and 
the advantages derived from both over the enervated 
great empires, and broken, disunited, lesser govern- 
ments of the world, extended the influence of that 
proud and domineering sect from the banks of the 
Ganges to the banks of the Loire. 




Tliis second period is the era of the Arabs. These 
people made a great and lasting impression on India. 
They established, very early, Mahomedan sovereigns 
in all parts of it, particulariy in the kingdom of Ben- 
gal, which is the principal object of our present in- 
quiry. They held that kingdom for a long series of 
years, under a dynasty of thirty-three kings, — hav- 
ing begun their conquest and founded their domin- 
ion in Bengal not very long after the time of their 

These people, when they first settled in India, at- 
tempted, with the ferocious arm of their prophetic 
sword, to change the religion and manners of that 
country ; but at length perceiving that their cruelty 
wearied out itself, and never could touch the con- 
stancy of the sufferers, they permitted tlie native 
people of the country to remain in quiet, and left 
the Mahomedan religion to operate upon them as it 
could, by appealing to the ambition or avarice of the 
great, or by taking the lower people, who had lost 
their castes, into this new sect, and thus, from the 
refuse of the Gentoo, increasing the bounds of the 
Mahomedan religion. They left many of the ancient 
rajahs of the country possessed of an inferior sov- 
ereignty ; and where the strength of the country, or 
other circumstances, would not permit this subordi- 
nation, they suffered them to continue in a separate 
state, approaching to independence, if not wholly in- 

The Mahomedans, during the period of the Arabs, 
never expelled or destroyed the native Gentoo nobil- 
ity, zemindars, or landholders of the country. They 
all, or almost all, remained fixed in their places, 
properties, and dignities ; and the shadows cf several 
of them remain under our jurisdiction. 





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The next, which is the third era, is an era the 
more necessary to observe upon, because Mr. Hast- 
ings has made many applications to it in his defence 
before tlie Commons : namely, the invasion of the Tar- 
tars, or the era of Tamerlane. These Tartars did not 
establish themselves on the ruins of the Hindoos. 
Their conquests were o^>r the other Mahomedans: 
for Tamerlane invaded 7Ii idostan, as he invaded oth- 
er countries, in the chp. ; '<,er of the great reformer 
of the Mahomedan religiv . He came as a sort of 
successor to the rights of the Prophet, upon a di- 
vine title. He struck at all the Mahomedan princes 
who reigned at that time. He considered them as 
oj^ostates, or at least as degenerated from the faith, 
and as tyrants abusing their power. To facilitate his 
conquests over these, he was often obliged to come 
to a sort of a composition with the people of the 
country he invaded. Tamerlane had neither time 
nor means nor inclination to dispossess the ancient 
rajahs of the country. 

Your Lordships will observe that I propose noth- 
ing more than to give you an idea of the princi- 
ples of policy which prevailed in these several rev- 
olutions, and not an history of the furious military 
achievements of a barbarous invader. Historians, 
indeed, are generally very liberal of their informa- 
tion concerning everything but what we ought to 
be very anxious to know. They tell us that India 
was conquered by Tamerlane, and conquered in such 
a year. The year will be found to coincide some- 
where, I believe, with the end of the fourteenth 
century. Thinking the mere fact as of little mo- 
ment, and its chronology as nothing, but thinking 
the policy very material, which, indeed, is to bo 






collected only here and there, in various books 
written with various views, I shall beg bave to lay 
before you a very remarkable circumstance relative 
to that policy, and taken from the same book to 
which I formerly referred, Mr. Holwell's. 

«' When the Hindoo rajahs, or princes of Hindos- 
tan, submitted to Tamerlane, it was on these capi- 
tal stipulations : that the emperor should marry a 
daughter of Rajah Cheyt Sing's house; that the 
head of this house should b° ^" perpetuity govern- 
ors of the citadel of Agra. 'noint the king at 
his coronation; and that th. rors should never 
impose the jessera (or poll-tax) upon the Hmdoos. 

Here was a conqueror, as he is called, coming in 
upon terms; mixing his blood with that of the na- 
tive nobility of the country he conquered, and, in 
consequence of this mixture, placing them in suc- 
cession upon the throne of the country he subdued; 
making one of them even hereditary constable of 
the capital of his kingdom, and thereby putting his 
posterity as a pledge into their hands. What is full 
as remarkable, he freed the Hindoos forever from 
that tax which the Mahomedans have laid upon 
every country over which the sword of Mahomet 
prevailed, — namely, a capitation tax upon all who 
do not profess the religion of the Mahomedans. 
But the Hindoos, by express charter, were exempt- 
ed from that mark of servitude, and thereby declared 
not to be a conquered people. The native princes, 
in all their transactions with the iV..gul government, 
carried the evident marks of this free condition in 
a noble independency of spirit. Within their own 
districts the authority of many of tliem seemed en- 
tire. We are often led into mistakes concerning 



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the government of Hindostan, by comparing it with 
those governments where the prince is armed with 
a full, speculative, entire authority, and where the 
great people ha\o, with great titles, no privileges at 
all, or, having privileges, have those privile,'^es only 
as sabjects. But in Hindostan the modes, the de- 
grees, the circumstances of subjection varied infinite- 
'' In some places hardly a trace at all of subjec- 
tion was to be discerned; in some the rajahs were 
almost assessors of the throne, as in this case of 
the Rajah Cheyt Sing. These circumstances mark, 
that Tamerlane, however he may be indicated by 
the odious names of Tr.rtar and Conqueror, was no 
barbarian; that the people who submitted to him 
did not submit with the abject submission of slaves 
Xo the sword of a conqueror, but admitted a great 
supreme emperor, who was just, prudent, and politic, 
mstead of the ferocious, oppressive, lesser Mahome- 
dan sovereigns, who had before forced their way by 
the sword into the country. 

That country resembled mc"^ a republic of prin- 
ces with a great chief at their head than a territory 
in absolute, uniform, systematic subjection from one 
end to the other, — in which light Mr. Hastings and 
others of late have thought proper to consider it. Ac- 
cording to them, if a subordinate prince, like Cheyt 
Sing, was not ready to pay any exorbitant sum on 
instant demand, or submit to any extent of fine which 
should be inflicted upon him by the mere will of the 
person who called robbery a fine, and who took the 
measure of that fine without either considering the 
means of paying or the degree of delinquency tliat 
justified it, their properties, liberties, and lives were 
instantly forfeited. The rajahs of that country were 

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armed ; they had fortresses for their security ; they 
had troops. In the receipt of both their own and the 
imperial revenue, their securities for justice were in 
their own hands: but the policy of the Mogul princes 
very rarely led them to push that people to such ex- 
tremity as it is supposed that on every slight occasion 
we have a right to push those who are the subjects 
of our pretended conquest. 

Mr. Holwell throws much light on this policy, 
which became the standing law of the empire. 

In the unfortunate wars which followed the death 
of Mauz-o-Din, " Sevajee Cheyt Sing," (the great ra- 
jah we have just mentioned,) " with a select body of 
Rajpoots, by a well-conducted retreat recovered Agra, 
and was soon after reconciled to the king [the Mogul] 
and admitted to his favor,— conformable to the steady 
policy of this government, in keeping a good under- 
standing with the principal rajahs, and more especially 
with the head of this house, who is ever capable of 
raising and fomenting a very formidable party upon 
any intended revolution in this despotic and precari- 
ous monarchy." 

You see that it was the monarchy that was precari- 
ous, not the rights of the subordinate chiefs. Your 
Lordships see, that, notwithstanding our ideas of Ori- 
ental despotism, under the successors of Tamerlane, 
these principal rajahs, instead of being called wretch- 
es, and treated as such, as Mr. Hastings has thought 
it becoming to call and treat them, when they were 
in arms against their sovereign, were regarded with 
respect, and were admitted lo easy reconciliations; 
because, in reality, in their occasional hostilities, 
they were not properly rebellious subjects, but prin- 
ces often asserting their natural rights and the just 
constitution of the country. 







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This view of the policy which prevailed during the 
dynasty of Tamerlaue naturally conducts me to the 
next, which is the fourth era in this history : I mean 
the era of the Emperor Akbar. Ho was the first of 
the successors of Tamerlane who obtained possession 
of Bengal. It is easy to show of what nature his 
conquest was. It was over the last Mahomedan 
dynasty. He, too, like his predecessor, Tamerlaue, 
conquered the prince, not the country. It is a cer- 
tain mark that it was not a conquered country in 
the sense in which we commonly call a country 
conquered, that the natives, great men and land- 
holders, continued in every part in the possession 
of their estates, and of the jurisdictions annexed to 
them. It is true, that, in the several wars for the 
succession to the Mogul empire, and in other of their 
internal wars, severe revenges were taken, which bore 
resemblance to those taken in the wars of the Roses 
in this country, where it was the common course, in 
the heat of blood, — " Off with his head! — so much 
for Buckingham ! " Yet, where the country again re- 
covered its form and settlement, it recovered the spirit 
of a mild government. Whatever rigor was used with 
regard to the Mahomedan adventurers from Persia, 
Turkey, and other parts, who filled the places of ser- 
vile grandeur in the Mogul court, the Hindoos were 
a favored, protected, gently treated people. 

Tlie next, which is the fifth era, is a troubled and 
vexatious period, — the era of the independent Su- 
bahs of Bengal. Five of these subahs, or viceroys, 
governed from about the year 1717, or thereabouts. 
They grew into independence partly by the calami- 
ties and concussions of that empire, which happened 
during the disputes for the succession of Tamerlane, 



and partly, and indeed principally, by the great shock 
which the empire received when Thamas Kouli Khan 
broke into that country, carried off its revenues, over- 
turned the throne, and massacred not only many of 
the chief nobility, but almost all the inhabitants of the 
capital city. This rude shock, which that empire was 
never able to recover, enabled the viceroys to become 
independent ; but their independence led to their ruin. 
Those who had usurped upon their masters had ser- 
vants who usurped upon them. Aliverdy Khan mur- 
dered his master, and opened a way into Bengal for a 
body of foreign invaders, the Mahrattas, who cruelly 
harassed the country for several years. Their retreat 
was at length purchased, and by a sum which is sup- 
posed to amount to five millions sterling. By this 
purchase he secured the exhausted remains of an ex- 
hausted kingdom, and left it to his grandson Surajah 
Dowlah, in peace and poverty. On the fall of Surajah 
Dowlah, in 1756, commenced the last, which is the 
sixth, — the era of the British empire. 

On the fifth dynasty I have only to remark to your 
Lordships, that at its close the Hindoo chiefs were 
almost everywhere found in possession of the coun- 
try • that, although Aliverdy Khan was a cruel tyrant, 
thoii-h he was an untitled usurper, though he racked 
and tormented the people under his government, 
urged, however, by an apparent necessity from an 
invading army of one hundred thousand horse in his 
dominions,-yet, ander him, the rajahs still preserved 
their rank, their dignity, their castles, their houses, 
their seigniories, all the insignia of their situation, 
and always the right, sometimes also the means, of 
protecting their subordinate people, till the last anc. 
unfortunate era of 1756. 






I , 


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Through the whole of this sketch of history 1 wish 
to impress but one great and important truth upon 
your minds : namely, that, through all these revolu- 
tions in government and changes in power, an Hindoo 
polity, and the spirit of an Hindoo government, did 
more or less exist in that province with which he was 
concerned, until it was finally to be destroyed by Mr. 

My Lords, I have gone through all the eras prece- 
dent to those of tlie British power in India, and am 
come to the first of those eras. Mr. Hastings existed 
in India, and was a servant of the Company before 
that era, and had his education between both. He is 
an antediluvian with regard to the British dominion 
in Bengal, He was coexistent with all the acts and 
monuments of that revolution, and had no small ih&re 
in all the abuses of that abusive period wliich pieceded 
his actual government. But as it was during that 
transit from Eastern to Western power that most of 
the abuses had their origin, it will not be perfectly 
easy for your Lordships thoroughly to enter into the 
nature and circumstances of them without an expla- 
nation of the principal events that happened from the 
year 1756 until the commencement of Mr, Hastings's 
government, — during a good part of which time we 
do not often lose siglit of him. If I find it agreeable 
to your Lordships, if I find that you wish to know 
these annals of Indian suflering and British delinquen- 
cy, if you desire that I should unfold the series of the 
transactions from 1756 t ihe period of Mr. Hastings's 
government in 1771, that you may know how far he 
promoted wliat was good, how far he rectified what 
was evil, how far he abstained from innovation in 




tyranny, and contented himself with the old stock 
of abuse, your Lordships will have the goodness to 
ornsult the strength which from late indisposition 
begins almost to fail me. And if you think the ex- 
planation is not time lost in this new world and in 
this new business, I shall venture to sketch out, as 
briefly and with as much perspicuity as I can give 
them, the leading events of that obscure and perplexed 
period which intervened between the British settle- 
ment in 1757 and Mr. Hastings's government. If I 
should be so happy as to succeed in that attempt, your 
Lordphips' minds will be prepared for hearing this 
cause. Then your Lordships will have a clear view 
of the origin and nature of the abuses which prevailed 
in that government before Mr. Eastings obtained his 
greatest power, and since that tin>e ; and then we 
shall be able to enter fully and explicitly into the 
nature of the cause : and I should hope that it will 
pave the way and make everything easy for your 
subsequent justice. 

I therefore wish to stop a* this period, in which Mr, 
Hastings became active in the service, pretty near the 
time when he began his political career: and here, 
my Lords, I pause, wishing your indulgence at such 
time as will suit your convenience for pursuing the 
rest of this eventful history. 

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MY LORDS, — In what I had the honor of laying 
before your Lordships yesterday, and in what I 
may further trouble you with to-day, I wish to observe 
a distinction, which if I did not lay down so perfectly 
as I ought, I hope I shall now be able to mark it out 
with sufficient exactness and perspicuity. 

First, I beg leave to observe that what I shall think 
necessary to state, as matter of preliminary explana- 
tion, in order to give your Lordships a true idea of 
the scene of action, of the instruments which Mr. 
Hastings employed, and the effects which they pro- 
duced, — all this I wish to be distinguished from 
matter brought to criminate. Even the matter, as 
stated by me, which may bo hereafter brought to 
criminate, so far as it falls to ray share at present, is 
only to be considered, in this stage of the business, 
as merely illustrative. Your Lordships are to expect, 
as undoubtedly you will require, substantial matter 
of crimination to be laid open for that purpose at the 
moment when the evidence to each charge is roady to 
be produced to you. Thus your Lordships will easily 
separate historical illustration from criminal opening. 
For instance, if I stated yesterday to your Lordships, 
as I did, the tyranny and cruelty of one of the usurp- 





ing viceroys, whose usurpation and whose vices led 
the way to the destruction of his country and the 
introduction of a foreign power, I do not mean to 
charge Mr. Hastings witli any part of that guilt: 
what bears upon Mr. Hastings is his having avowedly 
looked to such a tyrant and such a usurper as his 
model, and followed that pernicious example with a 
servile fidelity. When I have endeavored to lay open 
to your Lordships anything abusive, or leading to 
abuse, from defects or errors in tiie constitution of 
the Company's ser"ice, I did not mean to crirainato 
Mr. Hastings on any part of those defects and errors: 
I state them to show that he took advantage of the 
imperfections of the institution to let in his abuse of 
the power with which he was intrusted. If, for a 
further instance, I have stated that in general tlie ser- 
vice of the India Company was insufficient in legal 
pay or emolument and abundant in the means of 
iUepal profit, I do not state that defect as owing to 
Mr Hastings ; but I state it as a fact, to show m what 
manner and on what pretences he 'id, fraudulently, 
corruptly, and for the purposes of las own nmbition, 
toke advantage of that defect, and, under color of 
reformation, make an illegal, partial, corrupt rise of 
emoluments to certain favored persons without regard 
to the interests of the service at large, — increasmg 
rather than lessening the means of illicit emolument, 
as well as loading the Company with many heavy and 
ruinous expenses in avowed salaries and allowances. 

Having requested your Lordships to keep m mind, 
which 1 trust you would do even without my taking 
the liberty of suggesting it to you, these necessary 
distinctions, I shall revert to the period at which 1 
closed yesterday, that great and memorable period 



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which has remotely given occasion to the trial of this 

My Lords, to obtain empire is common ; to govern 
it well has been rare indeed. To chastise the guilt 
of those who have been instruments of imperial sway 
over ftthor nations by the high superintending justice 
of the sovereign state has not many strilcing examples 
among any people. Hitherto wo have not furnished 
our contingent to the records of honor. We havo 
been confounded with the herd of conquerors. Our 
dominion has been a vulgar thing. But we begin to 
emerge ; and I hope that a severe inspection of our- 
selves, a purification of our own offences, a lustration 
of the exorbitances of our own power, is a glory re- 
served to this time, to this nation, and to this august 

Tlie year 1756 is a memorable era in the history 
of the world : it introduced a new nation from the 
remotest verge of the Western world, with now man- 
ners, new customs, new institutions, new opinions, 
new laws, into the heart of Asia. 

My Lords, if, in that part of Asia whose native 
regular government was then broken up, — if, at the 
moment when it had fallen into darkness and confu- 
sion from having become the prey and almost the sport 
of the ambition of its home-born grandees, — if, in that 
gloomy season, a star had risen from the West, that 
would prognosticate a better generation, and would 
shed down the sweet influences of order, peace, sci- 
ence, and security to the natives of that vexed and 
harassed country, we should have been covered with 
genuine honor. It would have been a beautiful and 
noble spectacle to mankind. 



Indeed, Bomotliing might have bt.ea ted of 

the kind, when a new dominion omar • 'rom a 
learned and enlightened part < > J WorlJ in the 
most enlightened period of its existence. Still more 
might it have been exi)ectod, when that dominion was 
found to issue from the bosom of a free country, that 
it would have carried with it the full benefit of the 
vital principle of the British liberty and Constitution, 
though its municipal forms were not communicable, 
or at least the advantage of the liberty and spirit 
of the British Constitution. Had this been the case, 
(alas! it was not,) you would have b. on saved the 
trouble of this day. It might have been expected, too, 
that, in that enlightened state of the world, influenced 
by the best religion, and from an improved descrip- 
tion of that best religion, (I mean the Christian re- 
formed religion,) that we should have done honor to 
Europe, to letters, to laws, to religion, — done honor 
to all the circumstances of which in this island we 
boast ourselves, at the great and critical moment of 
that revolution. 

My Lords, it has happened otherwise. It is now 
left for us to repair our former errors. Resuming 
the history where I broke off" yesterday by yovir in- 
dulgence to my weakness, — Surajah Dowlah was the 
adopted grandson of Aliverdy Khan, a cruel and fe- 
rocious tyrant, the manner of whose acquisition of 
power I have already stated. He came too young 
and unexperienced to that throne of usurpation. It 
was a usurpation yet green in the country, and the 
country felt uneasy under it. It had not the advan- 
tage of that prescriptive usage, that inveterate habit, 
that traditionary opinion, which a long continuance 
of any system of government secures to it. The only 







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real security which Surajah Dowlah's government 
could possess was the security of an army. But the 
great aim of this prince and his predecessor was to sup- 
ply the weakness of his government by the strength 
of his purse ; he therefore amassed treasures by all 
ways and on all hands. But as the Indian princes, 
in general, are as unwisely tenacious of their treasure 
as they are rapacious in getting it, the more money 
he amassed, the more he felt the effects of poverty. 
The consequence was, that their armies were unpaid, 
and, being unpaid or irregularly paid, were undis- 
ciplined, disorderly, unfaithful. In this situation, a 
young prince, confiding more in the appearances 
than examining into the reality of things, undertook 
(from motives which the House of Commons, with 
all their industry to discover the circumstances, have 
found it difficult to make out) to attack a little mis- 
erable trading fort that we had erected at Calcutta. 
He succeeded in that attempt only because success 
in that attempt was easy. A close imprisonment of 
the whole settlement followed, — not owing, I be- 
lieve, to the direct will of the prince, but, what will 
always happen when the will of the prince is but too 
much the law, to a gross abuse of his power by his 
lowest servants, — by which one hundred and twenty 
or more of our countrymen perished miserably in a 
dungeon, by a fate too tragical for me to be desirous 
to relate, and too well known to stand in need of it. 

At the time that this event happened, there was at 
the same time a corcurrence of other events, which, 
from this partial and momentary weakness, displayed 
the strength of Great Britain in Asia. For some 
years before, the French and English troops began, 
on the coast of Coromandel, to exhibit the power, 



force, and efficacy of European discipline. As we 
daily looked for a war with France, our settlements 
on that coast were in some degree armed. Lord 
Pigot, then Governor of Madras, — Lord Pigot, the 
preserver and the victim of the British dominion in 
Asia, — detached such of the Company's force as 
could be collected and spared, and such of his Maj- 
esty's ships as were on that station, to the assistance 
of Calcutta. And — to hasten this history to its 
conclusion — the daring and commanding genius of 
Clive, the patient and firm ability of Watson, the 
treachery of Mir Jaffier, and the battle of Plassey 
gave us at once the patronage of a kingdom and the 
command of all its treasures. "We negotiated with 
Mir Jaffier for the viceroyal throne of his master. 
On that throne we seated him. And we obtained, on 
our part, immense sums of money. We obtained a 
million sterling for the Company, upwards of a mil- 
lion for individuals, in the whole a sum of about two 
millions two hundred and thirty thousand pounds for 
various purposes, from the prince whom we had set 
up. We obtained, too, the town of Calcutta more 
completely than we had before possessed it, and the 
twenty-four districts adjoining. This was the first 
small seminal principle of the immense territorial 
acquisitions we have since made in India. 

Many circumstances of this acquisition I pass by. 
There is a sacred veil to be drawn over the begin- 
nings of all governments. Ours in India had an 
origin like those which time has sanctified by obscu- 
rity. Time, in the origin of most governments, has 
thrown this mysterious veil over them; prudence 
and discretion make it necessary to throw something 
of the same drapery over more recent foundations, in 


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which otherwise the fortune, the genius, the talents, 
and military yirtue of this nation never shone more 
conspicuously. But whatever necessity might hide 
or excuse or palliate, in the acquisition of power, a 
wise nation, when it has once made a revolution up- 
on its own principles and for its own ends, rests there. 
The first step to empire is revolution, by which power 
is conferred ; the next is goc? laws, good order, good 
institutions, to give that pc wer stability. I am sorry 
to say that the reverse of this policy was the princi- 
ple on which the gentlemen in India acted. It was 
such as tended to make the new government as un- 
stable as the old. By the vast sums of money ac- 
quired by individuals upon this occasion, by the im- 
mense sudden prodigies of fortune, it was discovered 
that a revolution in Bengal was a mine much more 
easily worked and infinitely more productive than 
the mines of Potosi and Mexico. It was found that 
the work was not only very lucrative, but not at all 
difficult. Where Clive forded a deep water upon an 
unknown bottom, he left a bridge for his successors, 
over which the lame could hobble and the blind 
might grope their way. There was not at that time 
a knot of clerks in a counting-house, there was not 
a captain of a band of ragged topasses, that looked 
for anything less than the deposition of subahs and 
the sale of kingdoms. Accordingly, this revolution, 
which ought to have precluded other revolutions, un- 
fortunately became fruitful of them ; and when Lord 
Clive returned to Europe, to enjoy his fame and for- 
tune in his own coimtry, there arose another descrip- 
tion of men, who thought that a revolution might be 
made upon his revolution, and as lucrative to them 
as his was to the first projectors. Scarcely was Mir 

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Jaffier, Lord Olive's nabob, seated on his musnud, 
than they immediately, or in a short time, projected 
another revolution, a revolution which was to unset- 
tle all the former had settled, a revolution to make 
way for new disturbances and new wars, and which 
led to that long chain of peculation which ever since 
has afflicted and oppressed Bengal. 

If ever there was a time when Bengal should have 
had respite from internal revolutions, it was this. 
The governor forced upon the natives was now up- 
on the throne. All the great lords of the country, 
both Gentoos and Mahomedans, were uneasy, disco..- 
tented, and disobedient, and some absolutely in arms, 
and refusing to recognize the prince we had set up. 
An imminent invasion of the Mahrattas, an act-al 
invasion headed by the son of the Mogul, the reve- 
nues on ac( -'nt of the late shock very ill cc'.lected 
even wl' : 3ountry was in some apparent quiet, 

an hunj . i *iury at Calcutta, an empty treasury at 
Moorshe'n' . — everything demanded tranquillity, 
and with it order and economy. In this situation 
it was resolved to make a new and entirely merce- 
nary revolution, and to set up to sale the govern- 
ment, secured to its present possessor by every tie 
of public faith and every sacred obligation which 
could bind or influence mankind. This second 
revolution forms that period in the Bengal history 
which had the most direct influence upon all the 
subsequent transactions. It introduces some of the 
persons who were most active in the succeeding 
scenes, and from that time to this has given its 
tone and character to the British affairs and gov- 
ernment. It marks and specifies the origin and 
true principle of all the abuses which Mr. Hast- 

ii ' 

• I « 







ings was afterwards appointed to correct, and which 
the Commons charge that he continued and aggra- 
vated: namely, the venal depositions and venal ex- 
altations of the country powers ; the taking of bribes 
and corrupt presents from all parties in those 
changes ; the vitiating and maiming the Company's 
records ; the suppression of public correspondence ; 
cori-upt combinations and conspiracies; perfidy in 
negotiation established into principle; acts of the 
most atrocious wickedness justified upon purity of 
intention ; mock-trials and collusive acquittals among 
the parties in common guilt; and in the end, the 
Court of Directors supportirg th" scandalous breach 
of their own orders. I shall state the particulars 
of this second revolution more at large. 

Soon after the revolution which had seated Mir 
Jaffiei on the viceroyal throne, the spirit of the 
Mogul empire began, as it were, to make one faint 
struggle before it finally expu-ed. Tho then heir 
to that throne, escaping from the hands of those 
who had held his father prisoner, had put himself 
at the head of several chiefs collected under the 
standard of his house, and appeared in force on the 
frontiers of the provinces of Bengal and Bahar, upon 
both which he made some impression. This alarm- 
ed the new powers, the Nabob Mir Jaffier, and the 
Presidency of Calcutta ; and as in a common cause, 
and by the terms of their mutual alliance, they took 
the field against him. The Nabob's eldest son and 
heir-apparent commanded in chief. M^'or Calliaud 
commanded the English forces under the govern- 
ment of Calcutta. Mr. Holwell was in the tempo- 
rary possession of the Presidency. Mr. Vansittart 
was hourly expected to supersede him. Mr. Warren 



Hastings, a young gentleman about twenty-seven 
years of age, was Resident for the Company at the 
durbar, or court, of Mir Jaffier, our new-created 
Nabob of Bengal, allic.5 to this country by the most 
solemn treaties that can bind men ; for which trea- 
ties he had paid, and was then paying, immense 
sums of money. Mr. Warren Hastings was the 
pledge in his hands for the honor of the British na- 
tion, and their fidelity to their engagements. 

lu this situation, Mr. Holwell, whom the terrible 
example of the Black Hole at Calcutta had not 
cured of ambition, thought an hour was not to be 
lost in accomplishing a revolution and selling the 
reigning Nabob. 

My Lords, there was in the house of Mir Jaffier, 
in his court, and in his family, a man of an intrigu- 
ing, crafty, subtle, and at the same time oold, dar- 
ing, desperate, bloody, and ferocious character, called 
Cossim Ali Khan. He was the son-in-law of Mir 
Jaffier ; and he made no other uje of this affinity 
than to find some means to dethrone and to murder 
him. This was the person in whose school of politics 
Mr. Hastings made his first studies, and whoso con- 
duct he quotes as his example, and for whose fr.euds, 
agents, and favorites he has always shown a marked 
predilection. This dangerous man was not long 
without finding persons who observed his talents with 
admiration, and who thought fit to employ him. 

The Council at Calcutta was divided into two de- 
partments . one, the Council in general ; the other a 
Select Committee, which they had arranged for the 
better carrying on their political afiairs. But the Se- 
lect Committee had no power of acting wholly with- 
out the Council at large,— at least, finally and con- 







■J. :, 

$' fl 

H i: 

clusively. The Select Committee thought otherwise. 
Between these litigant parties for power I shall not 
determine on the merits, — thinking of nothing but 
the use that was made of the power, to whomsoever 
it belonged. This Secret Committee, then, without 
communicating with the rest of the Council, formed 
ther plan for a second revolution. But the concur- 
rence of Major Calliaud, who commanded the British 
troops, was essential to the purpose, as it could not 
be accomplished without force. Mr. Hastings's as- 
sistance was necessary, as it could not be accom- 
plished without treachery. 

These are the parties concerned in the intended 
revolution. Mr. Holwell, who considered himself in 
possession only of temporary power, was urged to pre- 
cipitate the business ; for if Mr. Vausittart should ar- 
rive before his plot could be finally put into execu- 
tion, he would have all the leading advantages of it, 
and Mr. Holwell would be considered only as a sec- 
ondary instrument. But whilst Mr. Holwell, who 
originally conceived this plot, urged forward the exe- 
cution of it, in order that the chief share of the prof- 
its might fall to him, the Major, and possibly the 
Resident, held back, till they might receive the sanc- 
tion of the permanent governor, who was hourly ex- 
pected, with whom one of them was connected, and 
who was to carry with him the whole weight of the 
authority of this kingdom. This difference produced 
discussions. Holwell endeavored by his correspond- 
ence to stimulate Calliaud to this enterprise, which 
without him could not be undertaken at all. But 
Major Calliaud had different views. He concurred 
inwardly, as he tells us himself, in all the principles 
of this intended revolution, in the propriety and ne- 


"■' :,,f ■ 



cessityofit. He only wished delay. But he gave 
such powerful, solid, and satisfactory reasons, not 
Tglsfthe delay, but the very merits of the design 
iteelf, exposing the injustice and the danger of it, 
and tl^e impossibility of mending by it their condition 
L any resil^ct, as must have damned it in the minds 
S all rational men : at least it ought to ^ave dammed 
it forever in his own. But you will see that Hoi- 
wen persevered in his plan, and «iat Maior Ca haud 
thought two things necessary: firs., not wholly to 
destroy the scheme, which he tells us he always aj. 
nroved but to postpone the execution,— and in the 
Sean time to delude the Nabob by the most strong 
2Z, and sanguine assurances of friendship and 
protection that it was possible to give to man 

Whilst the projected revolution stood f ^f "^^d'- 
whilst Mr. Holwell urged it forward, and Mr. Vansit- 
^r was expected every day to give ^ effect^^- whilst 
Major Calliaud, with this design of ruimng the Nabob 
lodged in his breast, suspended in e^f '^^^""'/f 
condemned in principle, kept the fairest face and the 
most Confidential interviews with that u.i ortu^te 
prince and his son,-as the operations of the (^m- 
paign relaxed, the army drew near to Moorshedabad, 
the capital, when a truly extraordinary scene hap- 
^enersuch I am sure the English annals before that 
time had furnished no example of, nor will, I trust, 
Tfu ure. I shall state it as one piece from begin- 
ning to end, reserving the events which intervened; 
becLse, as I do not produce any part of this series 
for the gratification of historical curiosity the con- 
exture is necessary to demonstrate to your Lordships 
t^^e sp'it of our Bengal politics, and the necessity of 
"ome other sort of judicial inquiries than those which 





hi V. !; 


i a 

that government institute for liemselves. The trans- 
action 80 manifestly marks the character of the whole 
proceeding that I hope I shall not be blamed for 
Buspenduig for a moment the narrative of the steps 
taken towards the revolution, that you may see the 
whole of this episode together, — that by it you may 
judge of the causes which led progressively to the 
state in which the Company's affairs stood, when Mr. 
Hastings was sent for the express purpose of reform- 
ing it. 

The business I am going to enter into is co'^'^nnly 
known by the name of the Story of the Tiiree oeuis. 
It is to be found in the Appendix, No. 10, to the 
First Report of the state and condition of the East 
India Company, made in 1773. The word Iteport, 
my Lords, is sometimes a little equivocal, and may 
signify sometimes, not what is made known, but what 
remains in obscurity : the detail and evidence of many 
facts referred to in the Report being usually thrown 
into the Appendix. Many people, and I among the 
rest, (I take shame to myself for it,) may not have 
fUlly examined that Appendix. I was not a member 
of either of tlie India committees of 1773. It is not, 
indeed, till within this year that I have been thor- 
oughly acquainted with that memorable history of the 
Three Seals. 

The history is this. In the year 1760 the allies 
were in the course of operations against the son 
of the Mogul, now the present Mogul, who, as I 
have already stated, had made an irruption into 
the kingdom of Bahar, in order to reduce the lower 
provinces to his obedience. The parties opposing 
him were the Nabob of Bengal and the Company's 
troops under Major Calliaud, It was whilst they 



faced the common enemy as one body, this negotia- 
tion for the destruction of the Nabob of Bengal by 
his faitiiful allies of the Company was going on 
with diligence. At that time the Nabob's sou, Mee- 
ran, a youth in the flower of his age, bold, vigorous, 
active, full of the politics in which those who are 
versed in usurpation are never wanting, command- 
ed the army under his father, but was in reality the 
efficient person in all things. 

About the 15th of April, 1760, as I have it from Ma- 
jor Calliaud's letter of that date, the Nabob came into 
his tent, and, with looks of the utmost embarrassment, 
big with some design which swelled his bosom, some- 
thing that was too large and burdensome to conceal, 
and yet too critical to be told, appeared to be in a 
state of great distraction. The Major, seeing him 
in this condition, kindly, gently, like a fast and sure 
friend, employed (to use his own expression) some of 
those assurances that tend to make men fully open their 
hearts; and accordingly, fortified by his assurances, 
and willing to disburden himself of the secret that 
oppressed him, he opens his heart to the command- 
ing officer of his new friends, allies, and protectors. 
The Nabob, thus assured, did open himself, and in- 
formed Major Calliaud that he had just received a 
message from the Prince, or his principal minister, 
informing him that the Prince Royal, now the Mogul, 
had an intention (as, indeed, he rationally might, 
supposing that we were as well disposed to him as 
we showed ourselves afterwards) to surrender him- 
self into the hands of him, the Nabob, but at the 
same time wished, as a guaravity, that the commander- 
in-chief of the English forces should give him secu- 
rity for his life and his honor, when he should in 

•- ' 

, f 





. f it 


that manner surrender himself to the Nabob. I do 
not mean, my Lords, by surrendering, that it was 
supposed he intended to surrender himself prisoner 
of war, but as a sovereign dubious of the fidelity of 
those about him would put himself into the hands 
of his faithful subjects, of those who claimed to de- 
rive all their power, as both we and the Nabob did, 
under his authority. The Nabob stated to the Eng- 
lish general, that without this English security the 
Prince would not deliver himself into his hands. 
Here he confessed be found a difficulty. For the 
giving this faith, if it were kept, would defeat his 
ultimate view, which was, when the Prince had de- 
livered himself into his hands, in plain terms to 
murder him. This grand act could not be accom- 
plished without the English general. In the first 
place, the Prince, without the English security, would 
not deliver himself into the Nabob's hands ; and af- 
terwards, without the English concurrence, he could 
not be murdered. These were difficulties that pressed 
upon the mind of the Nabob. 

The English commander heard this astonishing 
proposition without a> apparent emotion. Being 
a man liabituated to great affairs, versed in revolu- 
tions, and with a mind fortified against extraordinary 
events, he heard it and answered it without showing 
any signs of abhorrence or detestation, — at the same 
time with a protestation that he would indeed serve 
him, tlie Nabob, but it should be upon such terms 
as honor and justice could support : informing him, 
that an assurance for the Prince's safety could not 
be given by him, until he had consulted Mr. Holwell, 
who was Governor, and his superior. 

This conversation passed in the morning. On that 



Terr morning, and whUst the transaction was hot, 
Major Calliaud writes to Mr. Holwell au account of 
it In his letter he informs him that he made an 
inquiry, without stating from whom, but that he did 
inquire the probability of the Nabob's getting posses- 
sion of the Prince from some persons, who assured 
him that there was no probability of the Prince s m- 
tention to deliver himself to the Nabob on any terms. 
Be that as it may, it is impossible not to rcniark that 
the whole transaction of the morning of the 15th of 
Anril v as not very discouraging to the Nabob, -not 
such as would induce him to consider tins most de- 
testable of all projects as a thing utterly unfeasible, 
and as such to abandon it. The evening came o„ 
without anything to alter his opinion Major Cal- 
liaud that evening came to the Nabob's tent to ar- 
range some matters relative to the approaching cam- 
Daizn. The business soon ended with regard to the 
campaign ; but the proposal of the morning to Major 
Calliaud, as might be expected to happen, was m 
effect renewed. Indeed, the form was a little dif- 
ferent; but the substantial part remained the same. 
Your Lordships will see what these alterations were. 
In the evening scene the persons were more nu- 
merous. On the part of *he Company, Major Calli- 
aud, Mr. Lushington, Mr. Knox, and the ambassador 
at the Nabob's court, Mr. Warren Hastings On the 
part of the Moorish government, the Nabob himself, 
his son Meeran, a Persian secretary, and the Nabob s 
head spy, an officer well known in that part of the 
world, and of some rank. These were the persons 
If the drama in the evening scene. The Nabob and 
his son did not wait for the Prince's committing him- 
self to their faith, which, it seems. Major Calliaud 

U ' 

> 9 

If ' 



■ 'i 




f' ' HI 


... ^^t 



1 ! ■: ' 



did not think likely to lia t|^a ; j... tij^i one act of 
treachery is saved: but tinother ojxiiod of as ex- 
traordinary a nature. lutont ainl ois^r on the exe- 
cution, and tlio more certain, of their dtMgn, they ac- 
cepted the plan of a wicked wretch, principal servant 
of the then prime-minister to the Mogul, or them- 
Beltes suggested it to him. A person called Conery, 
dewan or principal f« toward to Camgar Kh&n, a great 
chief in the service of the Shalizada, or Prince, 
(now the Great Mogul, the sovereign under whom 
the Company holds their charter,) had, it seems, 
made a proposal to the Nabob, that, if a considera- 
ble territory then held by his master was assured 
to him, and a reward of a lac of rupees (ten or 
twelve thousand pounds) secured to him, he would 
for that consideration deliver the Prince, the oldest 
son of the Mogul, alive into the hands of the Nabob ; 
or if that could not be effected, he engaged to mur- 
der him for the same reward. But as the assassin 
could not rely on the Nabob and his son for his re- 
ward for this meritorious action, and thought better 
of English honor and fidelity in such delicate cases, 
he required that Major Calliaud should set his seal 
to the agreement. This proposition was made to an 
English commander: what discourse happened up- 
on it is uncertain. Mr. Hastings is stated by som.- 
evidence to have actod as interpreter in this mem- 
orable congress. But Major Calliaud agreed to i: 
without any difficulty. Acc ;ngly, an instrument 
was drawn, an indenture tripartite prepared by t'le 
Persian secretary, securing to the party the reward 
of this infamous, perfidious, ni irderous act. First, 
the Nabob put his own seal to the murder. The 
Nabob's son, Meeran, affixed his seal. A third seiil, 



the most important of all, was yet wanting. A pause 
ensued: Major Calliaud's seal was not hand; 
but Mr. Lushington was h nt near half » 'ule t.> 
bring it. It was brought at length ; and tli mstr 
ment of blood and treachery was con. .letely executr 
ed Three seals '-vcre set to it. 

This business of the three srals,by some moai 9 not 
Quite fully explaii.ed, but ( as 'spe<:tt-d by the parties) 
by means of the information of Mr. Uolwell, who soon 
after came home, was conveyed to the ears of the 
Court of Directors. The Court of Directors wrote 
out, under date of l e T.h of October, 1T61, withm a 
little more than a year after extracriinary rans- 
action, to this effect: — that, in conjunct ion wu i tho 
Nab 1) Miyor CaUiaud had signed a paper offering a 
rew xrd of a lac of rupees, or some sucli sum, to -v- 
eral l,>lack persons, for the assassination > the -ah- 
zada. , ■ Prince heir-apparent. -which paper was of- 
fered in the then Cliief of Patna to sign, but which 
he refused on account of the infamy of the measure. 
As it appeared in the same lir^^t to th-.n, the lireo- 
tors, they ordered a strict inqnry into it. The India 
Company, who here did their i ity with apparent man- 
liness and vigor, were resoiv.-i, however, to do i with 
gentl. .ess, and to proceed m a mann-T that could not 
produce any serious mischief to the parti.- charged 
for tb.'V directed the • -mmission of inquiry to the 
very la- and set of pe< .ic who, from participation 
in their common offences, stood in a J of one an- 
other,- in effect, to ti . p^rti.s ii' tlie tra.isaction. 
Waliout a prosecutor, vvithout an mpa tial ..^r. :or 
of ihe inquiry, they lefl it substantially to those per- 
.ns to try one another for their common acts. 
Here I come upon the principb which I wish most 




5 I ' 

hi ■» 

« ~ £ J 11 





.; '1 






strongly to mark to your Lordships: I mean collu- 
sive trials and collusive ccquittals. When this matter 
came to be examined, according to the orders of the 
Court, which was on the 4th of October, 1762, the 
Council consisted of Peter Maguire, Warren Hastings, 
and Hugh Watts. Mr. Hastings had by this time ac- 
complished the business of Resident with the Nabob, 
and had taken the seat to which his seniority entitled 
him in Council. Here a difficulty arose in limine. 
Mr. Hastings was represented to have acted as inter- 
preter in this business ; he was therefore himself an 
object of the inquisition ; he was doubtful as evidence ; 
he was disqualified as a judge. It likewise appeared 
that there might be some objection to others whose 
evidence was wanting, but who were themselves con- 
cerned in the guilt. Mr. Lushington's evidence 
would be useful, but there were two circumstances 
rather unlucky. First, he had put the seal to the in- 
strument of murder; ind, secondly, and what was 
most material, he had made an affidavit at Patna, 
whilst the affair was green and recent, that he had 
done so : and in the same affidavit had deposed that 
Warren Hastings was interpreter in that transaction. 
Here were difficulties both on him and Mr. Hastings. 
The question was, how to get Mr. Hastings, the inter- 
preter, out of his interpretation, and to put him upon 
the seat of judgment. It was effected, however, and 
the manner in which it was effected was something 
curious. Mr. Lushington, who by this time was got 
completely over, himself tells you that in conferences 
with Major Calliaud, and by arguments and reasons 
by him delivered, he was persuaded to unsay his 
swearing, and to declare that he believed that the 
affidavit which he made at Patna, and while the 


transaction was recent or nearly recent, must be a 
mistake: that he believed (what is amazing indeed for 
any belief) that not Mr. Hastings, but he himself, 
interpreted. Mr. Lushington completely loses his own 
memory, and he accepts an offered, a given memory, 
a memory supplied to him by a party in the transac 
tion. By this operation all difficulties are removed: 
Mr. Hastings is at once put into the capacity of a 
judge. He is declared by Mr. Lushington not to have 
been an interpreter in the transaction. After this, 
Mr. Hastings is himself examined. Your Lordships 
will look at the transaction at your leisure, and I 
think you will consider it as a pattern for inquiries 
of this kind. Mr. Hastings is examined : he does not 
recollect. His memory also fails on a business in 
which it is not easy to suppose a man could be doubt- 
ful, —whether he was present or not: he thinks he 
was not there, — for that, if he had been there, and 
acted as interpreter, he could not have forgot it. 

I think it is pretty nearly as I state it : if I have 
fallen into any error or inaccuracy, it is easily recti- 
fied ; for here is the state of the transaction given by 
the pai'ties themselves. On this inaccurate memory 
of Mr. Hastings, not venturing, however, to say posi- 
tively that he was not the interpreter, or that he was 
not present, he is discharged from being an accom- 
plice,— he is removed from the bar, and leaps upon 
the seat of justice. The court thus completed. Major 
Calliaud comes manfully forward to make his defence. 
Mr. Lushington is taken off his back in the manner 
we have seen, and no one person remains but Cap- 
tain Knox. Now, if Captain Knox was there and 
assenting, he is an accomplice too. Captain Knox 
asserts, that, at tho consultation about the murder, he 




' i 





said it was a pitj to cut off so fine a young fellow 
in such a manner, — meaning that fine young fellow 
the Prince, the descendant of Tamerlane, the present 
reigning Mogul, from whom the Company derive their 
present charter. The purpose to be served by this 
declaration, if it had any purpose, was, that Captain 
Knox did not assent to the murder, and that there- 
fore his evidence might be valid. 

The defence set up by Major Calliaud was to this 
effect. He was apprehensive, he said, that the Nabob 
was alarmed at the violent designs that were formed 
against him by k-. Holwell, and that therefore, to 
quiet his mind, (tt quiet it by a proposition com- 
pounded of murder and treason, — an odd kind of 
mind he had that was to be quieted by such means !) 
— but to quiet his mind, and to show that the Eng- 
lish were willing to go all lengths with him, to sell 
body and soul to him, he did put his seal to this 
extraordinary agreement, he put his seal to this won- 
derful paper. He likewise stated, that he was of 
opinion at the time that nothing at all sinister could 
happen from it, that no such murder was likely to 
take plfce, whatever might be the intention of the 
parties. In fact, he had very luckily said in a letter 
of his, written a day after the setting the seal, '' I 
think nothing will come of this matter, but it is 
no harm to try." Tliis experimental treachery, and 
these essays of conditional murder, appeared to him 
good enough to make a trial of ; but at the same time 
he was afraid nothing would come of it. In general, 
the whole gest of his defence comes to one point, in 
which ho persists, — that, whatever the act might 
be, his mind is clear : " My hands are guilty, but my 
heart is free." He conceived that it would be very 



improper, undoubtedly, to do faacli an act, if he sus- 
pected anything could happen from it : he, however, 
let the thing out of his own hands ; he put it into the 
hands of others ; he put the commission into the hands 
of a murderer. The fact was not denied ; it was fully 
before these severe judges. The extenuation was the 
purity of his heart, and the bad situation of the Com- 
pany's affairs, — the perpetual plea, which your Lord- 
ships will hear of forever, and which if it will justify 
evil actions, tloy will take good care that the most 
nefarious of their deeds shall never want a sufficient 
justification. But then he calls upon his life and his 
character to oppose to his seal ; and though he has 
declared that Mr. Holwell had intended ill to the Na- 
bob, and that he approved of those measures, and only 
postponed them, yet he thought it necessary, he says, 
to quiet the fears of the Nabob ; and from this motive 
he did an act abhorrent to his nature, and which, he 
says, he expressed his abhorrence of the morning af- 
ter ho signed it : not that he did so ; but if he had, I 
believe it would only have made the thing so many 
degrees worse. Your Lordships will observe, that, in 
this conference, as stated by himself, these reasons 
and apologies for it did not appear, nor did they ap- 
pear in the letter, nor anywhere else, till next year, 
when he came upon his trial. Then it was imi;!edi- 
ately recollected that Mr. Holwell's designs were so 
wicked they certainly must be known to the Nabob, 
though he never mentioned them in the conference 
of the morning or the evening of the 15th ; yet such 
was now the weight and prevalence of them upon the 
Major's mind, that he calls upon ^Ir. Hastings to 
know whether the Nabob was not informed of these 
designs of Mr. Holwell against him. Mr. Hastings's 


'f 1 

V • 







'^;«''» >-4'. ''I 



' 11 


memory was not quite correct upon the occasion. 
He does not recollect anything of the matter. He 
certainly seems not to think that he ever mentioned 
it to the Nabob, or the Nabob to him ; but he does 
recollect, he thinks, speaking something to some of 
the Nabob's attendants upon it, and further this de- 
ponent sayeth not. On this state of things, namely, 
the purity of intention, the necessities of the Company, 
the propriety of keeping the Nabob in perfect good- 
humor and removing suspicions from his mind, which 
suspicions he had never expressed, they came to the 
resolution I shall have the honor to read to you: 
" That the representation, given in the said defence, 
of the state of the affairs of the country at that time " 
(that is, about the month of April, 1760) " is true 
and just" (that is, the bad state of the country, 
which we shall consider hereafter) ; " that, in such 
circumstances, the Nabob's urgent account of his own 
distresses, the Colonel's desire of making him easy," 
(for here is a recapitulation of the whole defence,) 
" as the first thing necessary for the good of the ser- 
vice, and the suddenness of the thing proposed, might 
deprive him for a moment of his recollection, and 
surprise him into a measure which, as to the meas- 
ure itself, he could not approve. That such only 
were the motives which did or could influence Colonel 
Calliaud to assent to the proposal is fully evinced by 
the deposition of Captain Knox and Mr. Lushington, 
that hia {^Calliaud' »] conscience, at the time, never re- 
proached him with a bad design." 

Your Lordships have heard of the testimony of a 
person to his own conscience ; but the testimony of an- 
other man to any one's conscience — this is the first 
time, I believe, it ever appeared in a judicial proceed- 




ing. It is natural to say, " My conscience acquits 
mo of it"; but they declare, that "Ai« conscience 
never reproached him with a bad design, and there- 
fore, upon the whole, they are satisfied that his inten- 
tion was good, though he erred in the measure." 

I beg leave to state one thing that escaped me : 
that the Nabob, who was one of the parties to the 
design, was, at the time of the inquiry, a sort of 
prisoner or an exile at Calcutta ; that his moonshee 
was there, or might have been had ; and that his spy 
was likewise there ; and that they, though parties to 
this transaction, were never called to account for it 
in any sense or in any degree, or to show how far it 
was necessary to quiet the Nabob's mind. 

The accomplices, by acquitting him upon their tes- 
timony to his conscience, did their business nobly. 
But the good Court of Directors, who were so eaiily 
satisfied, so ready to condemn at the first proposition 
and so ready afterwards to acquit, put the last fin- 
ishing hand of a master to it. For the accomplices 
acquit him of evil intentions and excuse his act. 
The Court of Directors, disapproving indeed the 
measure, but receiving the testimony of his con- 
science in justification of his conduct, and taking 
up the whole ground, honorably acquit him, and 
commend this action as an instance of heroic zeal 
in their service. 

The great end and purpose for which I produce 
this to your Lordships is to show you the necessity 
there is for other inquiries, other trials, other acquit- 
tals of parties, than those made by a collusive clan 
abroad, or by the Directors at homo, who had required 
the parties to inquire of themselves, and to take tho 
tcstunony of the judges at second-hand, as to the 




I « 






tf 1 


conscience of the party accused, respecting acts which 
neither thej nor any man living can look upon but 
with horror. 

I have troubled your Lordships with the story of 
the Three Seals, as a specimen of the then state of 
the service, and the politics of the servants, civil and 
military, in the horrid abuses which then prevailed, 
and which render at length the most rigorous refor- 
mation necessary. I close this episode to resume 
the proceedings at the second revolution. 

This affair of the three seals was, we have seen, 
to quiet the fears of the Nabob. His fears it was 
indeed necessary to quiet; for your Lordships will 
see that the man whose fears were to bo set asleep 
by Major Calliaud's offering him, in a scheme for 
murdering his sovereign, an odd sort of opiate, 
made up of blood and treason, was now in a fair 
way of being murdered himself by the machina- 
tions of him whose seal was set to his murderous 
security of peace, and by those his accomplices, Hol- 
well and Hastings : at least they resolved to put him 
in a situation in which his murder was in a manner 
inevitable, as you will see in the sequel of the trans- 
action. Now the plan proceeds. The parties contin- 
ued in the camp ; but there was another remora. To 
remove a nabob and to create a revolution is not 
easy : houses are strong who have sons grown up with 
vigor and fitness for the command of armies. They 
are not easily overturned by removing the principal, 
unless the secondary is got rid of: and if this remcra 
could be removed, everything was going on in a happy 
way in the business. This plan, which now (that is, 
about the month of July) began to get into great 
ripeness and forwardness, Mr. Holwell urged forward, 
Mr. Yansittart being hourly expected. 



I do not know whether I am going to state a thing, 
though it is upon the records, which will not have too 
theatrical an appearance for the grave state in which 
we are. But here it is, — the diflSculty, the knot, and 
the solution, as recorded by the parties themselves. 
It was the object of this bold, desperate, designing 
man, Cossim Ali Khftn, who aimed at everything, 
and who scrupled not to do anything in attaining 
what he aimed at, to be appointed the lieutenant of 
the Nabob Jaffier Ali, and thus to get possession of 
his ofiBce during his lifetime under that name, with a 
design of murdering him : for that office, according to 
many usages of that country, totally supersedes the 
authority of the first magistrate, renders him a ci- 
pher in his hand, gives the administration of his affairs 
and command of his troops to the lieutenant. It was 
a part of his plan, that he was, after his appointment 
to the lieutenancy, to be named to the succession of 
the Nabob, who had several other children ; but the 
eldest son stood in the way. 

But as things hastened to a crisis, this difficulty was 
removed in the most extraordinary and providential 
unheard-of manner, by the most extraordinary event 
that, I believe, is recorded in history. Just in the 
nick of time, in the moment of projection, on the 3d 
of July, this Prince Meeran, in the flower of his age, 
bold, active, enterprising, lying asleep in his tent, is 
suddenly, without any one's knowing it, without any 
alarm or menace in the heavens that ever was heard 
of or mentioned, without any one whatever being 
hurt or even alarmed in the camp, killed with a flash 
of lightning. My Lords, thus was the Gordian knot 
cut. This prince dies of a flash of lightning, and 
Mr. Lushington (of whom you have heard) comes in 












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the morning with his hair standing erect, comes 
frightened into the presence of Major Calliaud, and, 
with the utmost alarm, tells him of a circumstance 
that was afterwards to give them so much pleasure. 
- The alarm was immediately communicated to the Ma- 
jor, who was seized with a fright ; and fearing lest 
the army should mutiny upon the death of their chief, 
it was contrived, in a manner that I believe was most 
difficult to contrive, that what might have excited a 
general mutiny was concealed by the ability, the good 
conduct, and dexterity of Major Calliaud for seven 
days together, till he led the army out of the place 
of danger. Thus a judgment fell upon one of the 
(innocent) murderers in the scene of the Three Seals. 
This man, who was probably guilty in his conscience 
as well as in act, thus fell by that most lucky, provi- 
dential, and most useful flash of lightning. 

There were at that time, it seems, in Calcutta, a 
wicked, skeptical set of people, who somehow or 
other believed that human agency was concerned in 
this elective flash, which came so very opportunely, 
and which was a favor so thankfully acknowledged. 
These wicked, ill-na<":r.3d skeptics disseminated re- 
ports (which I am sure I do not mean to charge or 
prove, leaving the effect of them to you) very dishon- 
orable, I believe, to Cossim Ali Khftn in the busi- 
ness, and to some Englishmen who were concerned. 

The difficulty of getting rid of Meeran being thus 
removed, Mr. Vansittart comes upon the scene. I 
verily believe he was a man of good intentions, and 
rather debauched by that amazing flood of iniquity 
which prevailed at that time, or hurried and carried 
away with it. In a few days he sent for Major Cal- 
liaud. All his olyections vanish in an instant: like 



that flash of lightning, everjthing is instant. Tha 
Major agrees to perform his part. They send for 
Cossim Ali Khan and Mr. Hastings ; they open a 
featy and conclude it with him, leaving the manage- 
ment of it to two persons, Mr. Holwell and another 
person, whom we have heard of, an Armenian, called 
Coja Petruse, who afterwards played his part in an- 
other illustrious scene. By this Petruse and Mr. 
Holwell the matter is settled. The moment Mr. 
Holwell is raised to be a Secretary of State, the rev- 
olution is accomplished. By it Cossim Ali Khan is 
to have the lieutenancy at present, and the succes- 
Everything is put into his hands, and he is to 


make for it large concessions, which you will hear of 
afterwards, to the Company. Cossim Ali Khan pr(v 
posed to Mr. Holwell, what would have been no bad 
supplement to the flaah of lightning, the murder of 
the Nabob ; but Mr. Holwell was a man of too much 
honor and conscience to suffer that. He instantly 
flew out at it, faid declared the whole business should 
stop, unless the affair of the murder was given up. 
Accordingly things were so settled. But if he gave 
the Nabob over to an intended murderer, and deliv- 
ered his person, treasure, and everything into his 
hands, Cossim Ali Khan might have had no great 
reason to complain of being left to the execution of 
his own projects in his own way. The treaty was 
made, and amounted to this, — that the Company 
was to receive three great provinces : for here, as we 
proceed, you will have an opporturity of observing, 
with the progress of these plots, one thing which has 
constiuiily and uniformly pervaded the whole of these 
projects, and which the persons concerned in them 
have avowed as a principle of their actions, — that 


■ ■ '"!■« 





they were first to take care of the Company's interest, 
then of their own ; that is, first to secure to the Com- 
pany an enormous bribe, and under the shadow of 
that bribe to take all the little emoluments they could 
•to themselves. Three great, rich, southern provinces, 
maritime, or nearly maritime, Burdwan, Midnapoor, 
and Cliittagong, were to be dissevered from the Su- 
bah and to bo ceded to the Company. There were 
other minor stipulations, which it is not necessary at 
present to trouble you with, signed, sealed, and exe- 
cuted at Calcutta between these parties with the great- 
est possible secrecy. The lieutenancy and the suc- 
cession were secured to Cossim Ali, and he was like- 
wise to give somewliere about the sum of 200,000/. 
to the gentlemen who were concerned, as a reward for 
serving him so effectually, and for serving their coun- 
try so well. Accordingly, these stipulations, actual 
or understood, (for they were eventually carried into 
effect,) being settled, a commission of delegation, con- 
sistuig chiefly of Mr. Vansittart and Major Calliaud, 
was sent up to Moorshedabad : the new Governor 
taking this opportunity of paying the usual visit of 
respect to the Nabob, and in a manner which a new 
Governor coming into place would do, with the de- 
tail of wiiich ii is not necessary to trouble you. Mr. 
Hastings was at this time at the durbar ; and having 
every thii,' prepared, and the ground smoothed, they 
fir&L endeavored to persuade the Nabob to deliver 
over the power negotiated for into tiie hands of their 
friend Cossim Ali Khan. But when the old man, 
frightened out of his wits, asked, " Wliat is it ho has 
bid for me ? " and added, " I will give half as much 
again to save myself; pray let me know what my 
price is," — he entreated in vain. They were true 




firm, and faithful to their \vurd and their engagement. 
When lie saw they were reaolvr-d that he should bo 
delivcied into the hands of C aim Ali Khdn, he at 
once Hunenders the whole to iiim. They instantly 
grasp it. He throws himself into a coat, and will 
not remain at home an hour, but hurries down to 
Calcutta to leave his blood at our door, if we should 
have a mind to take it. But tlu- life of the Nabob 
was too great a stake (partly as a security for the 
good behavior of Cossim Ali Khiu, and etill more 
for the future use that might be made of him) to 
be thrown away, or left in the hands of a man who 
would certaijily murder him, and who was very an- 
gry at being refused the murder of his father-in- 
law. The price of this second revolution was, ac- 
cording to their shares in it, (I believe 1 have it 
here,) somewhere about 200,000i. This little effu- 
sion to private interest settled the matter, and here 
ended the second revolution in the country : effected, 
indeed, without bloodshed, but with infinite treachery, 
with infinite mischief, consequent to the dismember- 
ment of the country, and which had nearly become 
fatal to our concerns there, Uke everything else in 
which Mr. Hastings had any share. 

This prince, Cossim Ali Khan, the friend of Mr. 
Hastings, kuew that those who could give could take 
away dominion. He had scarcely got upon the 
throne, procured for him by our public spirit and his 
own iniquities, than he began directly and instantly 
to fortify himself, and to bend all his politics against 
those who were or could be the donors of such fatal 
gifts. Ho began with the natives who were in their 
interest, and cruelly put to death, under the eye of 
Mr. Hastings and his clan, all those who, by their 


■ I 







monejed wealth or lauded consideration, could give 
any effect to tlieir dispositione in favor of those am- 
bitious strangers. He removed from Moorshedabad 
higher up into the country, to Monghir, in order to 
be more out of our view. He kept his word pretty 
well, but not altogether faithfully, with the gentle- 
men ; and though he had no money, for his treasury 
was empty, he gave obligations which ;iro knoVn by 
the name of jeep» — (the Indian vocabulary will by 
degrees become familiar to your Lordships, as we de- 
velop the modeb and customs of the country). As 
soon as he had done this, he began to rack and tear 
tlie provinces that were left to him, to get as much 
from them as should compensate him for the reve- 
nues of tliose great provinces he had lost ; and accord- 
ijigly ho began a scene of extortion, horrible, nefari- 
ous, without precedent or example, upon almost all 
the landed interest of that country. I mention this, 
because he is one of those persons whose governments 
Mr. Hastings, in a paper called his Defence, delivered 
in to the House of Commons, has produced as prece- 
dents and examples which he has thought fit to fol- 
low, and which he thought would justify him in the 
conduct he has pursued. This Cossim AH Khan, 
after he liad acted the tyrant on the landed inter- 
est, fell upon the moneyed interest. In that country 
there was a person called Juggut Seit. There were 
several of the family, who were bankers to such a 
magnitude as was never heard of in the world. Re- 
ceivers of the public revenue, their correspondence 
extended all over Asia ; and there are those wlio are 
of opinion that the house of Juggut Seit, including 
all its branches, was not worth less than six or seven 
millions sterling. This house became the prey of 



CoMim All Khan; but Mr. Holwell had pradicted 
that it thould be ddivered over to Satan to />. I"- feted 
(his own pious exprossiou). Ho predicted iho mis^- 
fortunes that should befall them ; and we chuso a .Sa- 
tan to buffet them, and who did so buffet them, by 
the murder of tlie principal ; t-rsons of the hou«o, au.l 
by robbing them of great sums of their wealth, that I 
believe such a sc -of nefarious tyranny, destroying 
and cuttuig u|. the root of public crodit in that coun- 
try, was scarce < ver known. lu the moan tuiu Cos- 
8im was extending his tyranny over all who were ob- 
noxious to him ; and the persons he first sought v. re 
those traitors who had been friends to the English. 
Several of the principal of these he murdered. There 
was in the province of Bahar a man named Rama 
rain; he had got the most positive assurances of En,'- 
Ush faith ; but Mr. Macguiro, a member of the Coun- 
cil, on the receipt of five thousand gold mohurs, or 
something more than 8000Z. sterling, delivered hun 
up to bo first imprisoned, then tortured, then robbed 
in consequence of the torture, and finally murdered, 
by Cossim Ali Kh ai. In this way Cossim Ah Kluui 
acted, while our gr.v.rnment looked on. I hardly 
choose to mention to you the fate of a certain na- 
tive in consequence of a dispute with Mr. Mott, a 
friend of Mr. Hastings, which is in the Company s 
records,— records which are almost buried by their 
own magnitude from the knowledge of this coun- 
try In a contest with this native for l.i- house and 
property, some scuffle having happen..! between the 
parties, the one attempting to seize and the other 
to defend, the latter made a complaint to the Nabob, 
who was in an entire subjection at that time to the 
English, and who ordered this unfortunate man, on 













account of this very scufHe, arising from defending 
his property, to be blown off from the mouth of a 
cannon. In short, I am not able to tell your Lord- 
ships of all the nefarious transactions of this man, 
- whom the intrigues of Mr. Holwell and Mr. Hastings 
had set upon the throne of Bengal. But there is a 
circumstance in tliis business that comes across here, 
and will tend to show another grievance that vexed 
that country, which vexed it long, and is one of the 
causes of its chief disasters, and which, I fear, is not 
so perfectly extirpated but that some part of its roots 
may remain in the ground at this moment. 

Commerce, which enriches every other country in 
the world, was bringing Bengal to total ruin. The 
Company, in former times, when it had no sover- 
eignty or power in the country, had large privileges 
under their dustuek, or permit: their goods passed, 
without paying duties, through the country. The 
servants of the Company made use of this dustuek 
for their own private trade, which, while it was 
used witli moderation, the native government winked 
at in some degree ; but when it got wholly into pri- 
vate hands, it was more like robbery than trade. 
These traders appeared everywhere; they sold at 
their own prices, and forced the people to sell to 
them at their own prices also. It appeared more 
like an army going to pillage the people, under 
pretence of commerce, than anything else. In vain 
t)'e people claimed the protection of their own coun- 
try courts. This English army of traders in their 
marcli ravaged worse than a Tartarian conqueror. 
The trade tliey carried on, and which more resem- 
bled robbery than commerce, anticipated the resources 
of the tyrant, and threatened to leave him no mate- 




rials for imposition or confiscation. Thus this mis- 
erable country was torn to pieces by tlie liorriblo 
rapaciousness of a double tyranny. This appeared 
to be 80 strong a case, that a deputation was sent 
to him at his new capital, Monghir, to form a treaty 
for the purpose of giving some relief against this cru- 
el, cursed, and oppressive trade, which was worst, 
even than tlie tyranny of the sovereign. This trade 
Mr. Vansittart, the President about this time, that 
is, in 1763, who succeeded to Mr. Holwell, and was 
in close union of interests with the tyrant Cossim 
Ali Khan, by a treaty known by the name of the 
treaty of Monghir, agreed very much to suppress 
and to confine within something like reasonable 
bounds. There never was a doubt on the face of 
ihat treaty, that it was a just, proper, fair transac 
tion. But as nobody in Bengal did then believe 
that rapine was ever forborne but in favor of bri 
bery, the persons who lost every advantage by the 
treaty of Monghir, when they thought they saw cor- 
rupt negotiation carrying away the prizes of unlaw- 
ful commerce, and were likely to see their trade 
crippled by Cossim Ali KhSn, fell into a most vio- 
lent fury at this treaty ; and as the treaty was made 
without the concurrence of the rest of the Council, 
the Company's servants grew divided : one part were 
the advocates of the treaty, the other of the trade. 
The latter were universally of opinion that the trea- 
ty was bought lor a great sum of money. The evi- 
dence we have on our records of the sums of money 
that are stated to have been paid on this occasion 
has never been investigated to the bottom ; but wo 
have it on record, that a great sum ( 70,000i.) was 
paid to persons concerned in that negotiation. The 













rest were exceedingly wroth to see themselves not 
profiting by the negotiation, and losing the trade, or 
likely to be excluded from it; and they were the 
more so, because, as we have it upon our journals, 
, during all that time the trade of tlie negotiators was 
not proscribed, but a purwanuah was issued by Cos- 
sim Ali Khan, that the trade of his friends Mr. 
Vansittart and Mr. Hastings should not be subject 
to the general regulations. This filled the whole 
settlement with ill blood ; but in the regulation itself 
(I put the motive and the secret history out of the 
case) undoubtedly Mr. Hastings and Mr. Vansittart 
were on the right side. They had shown to a dem- 
onstration the mischief of this trade. However, 
as the other party were strong, and did not readily 
let go their hold of this great advantage, first, dis- 
sensions, murmurs, various kinds of complaints, and 
ill blood arose. Cossim Ali was driven to tlie wall ; 
and having at the same time made what he thought 
good preparations, a war broke out at last. And 
how did it break out? This Cossim Ali Khan 
signalizud his first acts of hostility by an atrocity 
committed against the faith of treaties, against the 
rules of war, ftgainst every principle of honor. This 
intended murderer of his father-in-law, whom Mr. 
Hastings had assisted to raise to the throne of 
IJengal, well knowing his character and his dispo- 
sition, and well knowing what such a man was ca- 
pable of doing, — this man massacred the English 
\> ever he met them. There were two hundred, 
or Uiereabouts, of the Company's servants, or tiieir do- 
pendants, slaughtered at Patna with every circum- 
stance of the most aI)ominal)le cruelty. Their limbs 
were cut lo pieces. The tyrant whom Mr. Hastings 




Bet up cut and hacked the limbs of British subjects 
in the most cruel and perfidious manner, threw them 
into wells, and noUuted the waters of the country 
with British blood. Immediately war is declared 
against hir in form. That war sets the whole 
country in a blaze ; and then other parties begin to 
appear^ upon the scene, whose transactions you will 
find yourselves deeply concerned in hereafter. 

As soon as war was declared against Cossim, it 
was necessary to resolve to put up another Nabob, 
and to have another revolution : and where do they 
resort, but to the man whom, for his alleged tyranny, 
for his incapacity, for the numberless iniquities he 
was said to have committed, and for his total unfit- 
ness and disinclination to all the duties of govern- 
ment, they had dethroned? Tliis very man they 
take up again, to place on the throne from which 
they had about two years before removed him, and 
for the effecting of which they had committed so ma- 
ny iniquities. Even this revolution was not made 
without being paid for. According to the usual or- 
der of procession, in which the youngest walk first, 
first comes the Company ; and the Company had se- 
cured to it in perpetuity those provinces which Cos- 
sim Ali Khan had ceded, as it was thought, rather in 
the way of mortgage than anything else. Tlien, un- 
der the name of compensation for sufierings to the 
people concerned in the trade, and in the name of 
donation to an army and a navy which had little to 
do in this afiair, they tax him — what sum do you 
think ? They tax that empty and undone treasury of 
that miserable and undone country 500,000i. for a 
private en-.olument to themselves,— for the compen- 
eation for this iniquitous trade, — for the compensa- 


- '■ ^ 



tion for abuses of which he; was neither the author nor 
the abettor, they tax this miserable prince 600,000^. 
That sum was given to individuals. Now comes the 
Company at home, which, on hearing this news, was 
all inflamed. The Directors were on fire. They were 
shocked at it, and particularly at this donation to 
the army and navy. They resolved they would give 
it no countenance and support. In the mean time 
the gentlemen did not trouble their heads upon that 
subject, but meant to exact and get their 600,000/. 
as they could. 

Here was a third revolution, bought at this amaz- 
ing sum, and this poor, miserable prince first dragged 
from Moorshedabad to Calcutta, then dragged back 
from Calcutta to Moorshedabad, the sport of fortune 
and the plaything of avarice. This poor man is again 
set up, but is left with no authority : his troops lim- 
ited, — his person, everything about him, in a man- 
ner subjugated, — a British Resident the master of 
his court : he is set up as a pageant on this throne, 
with no other authority but what would be sufficient 
to give a countenance to presents, gifts, and donations. 
That authority was always left, when all the rest was 
taken away. One would have thought that this revo- 
lution might have satisfied these gentlemen, and that 
the money gained by it would have been sufficient. 
No. The partisans of Cossim Ali wanted anotlier 
revolution. The partisans of the other side wished 
to have something more done in the present. Tlioy 
now began to think tljat to depose Cossim instantly, 
and to sell iiim to another, was too much at one time, 
— especially as Cossim Ali was a man of vi<ror and 
resolution, carrying on a fierce war against them. 
But what do you think they did ? They began to see, 



from the example of Cossim Ali, that the lieutenancy, 
the ministry of the king, was a good thing to be sold, 
and the sale of that might turn out as good a thmg 
as the sale of the prince. 

For this office there were two rival candidates, per- 
sons of great consideration in Bengal : one, a princi- 
pal Mahomedan, called Mahomed Reza Kh^n, a man 
of high authority, great piety in his own religion, 
great learning in the law, of the very first class of 
Mahomedan nobility ; but at the same time, on all 
these accounts, he was abhorred and dreaded by the 
Nabob, who necessarily feared that a man of Ma- 
homed Reza Khan's description would be considered 
as better entitled and fitter for his seat, as Nabob 
of the provinces. To balance him, there was another 
man, known by the name of the Great Rajah Nund- 
comar. This man was accounted the highest of his 
caste, and held the same rank among the Gentoos 
that Mahomed Reza Khan obtained among the Ma- 
homedans. The prince on the throne had no jeal- 
ousy of Nundcomar, because he knew, that, as a Gen- 
too, he could not aspire to the office of Subahdar. 
For that reason he was firmly attached to him; ho 
might depend completely on his services ; he was his 
against Slahomed Reza Khan, and against the whole 
world. There was, however, a flaw in the Nabob's 
title, which it was necessary should be hid. And per- 
haps it lay against Mahomed Reza Kh&n as well as 
him. But it was a source of apprehension to the 
Nabob, and contributed to make him wish to keep 
all Mahomedan influence at a distance. For he was 
a Syed, that is to say, a descendant of Mahomet, and 
as such, though of the only acknowledged nobility 

among Mussulmen, would be by that circumstance 


■ 1 


< J 







'it i ti i' !. 

M It H 

mm I 

si 4 ^ 



excluded, by the knowu laws of the Mogul empire, 
from being Subahdar in any of the Mogul provinces, 
in case the revival of the constitution of that empire 
should ever again take place. 

An auction was now opened before the English 
Council at Calcutta. Mahomed Reza Eh&n bid large- 
ly ; Nundcomar bid largely. The circumstances of 
these two rivals at the Nabob court were equally fa- 
vorable to the pretensions of each. But the prepon- 
derating merits of Mahomed Reza Ehau, arising from 
the subjection in which he was likely to keep the Na- 
bob, and make him fitter for the purpose of continued 
exactions, induced the Council to take his money, 
which amounted to about 220,0002. Be the sum paid 
what it may, it was certainly a large one ; in conse- 
quence of which the Council attempted to invest Ma- 
homed Reza Khan with the office of Naib Subah, or 
Deputy Viceroy. As to Nundcomar, they fell upon 
him with a vengeful fury. He fought his battle as 
well as he could ; he opposed bribe to bribe, eagle to 
eagle ; but at length he was driven to the wall. Some 
received his money, but did him no service in return ; 
others, more conscientious, refused to receive it ; and 
in this battle of bribes he was vanquished. A depu- 
tation was sent from Calcutta to the miserable Nabob, 
to tear Nundcomar, his only support, from his side, 
and to put the object of all his terrors, Mahomed Reza 
Khan, in his place. 

Thus began a new division that split the Presi- 
dency iiito violent factions; but the faction which 
adhered to Nundcomar was undoubtedly the weakest. 
That most miserable of men, Mir Jafficr Ali Kh&n, 
clinging, as to the last pillar, to Nundcomar, trem- 
bling at Mahomed Reza Khan, died in the struggle, 




a miserable victim to all the revolution 9, to all the 
successive changes and versatile politics at Calcutta. 
Like all the rest of the great personages whom we 
have degraded and brutalized by insult and oppres- 
sion, he betook himself to the usual destructive re- 
sources of unprincipled misery, — sensuality, opium, 
and wine. His gigantic frame of constitution soon 
gave way under the oppression of this relief, and he 
died, leaving children and grandchildren by wives 
and concubines. On the old Nabob's death, Maho- 
med Reza Kh&n was acknowledged Deputy Nabob, 
the money paid, and this revolution completed. 

Here, my Lords, opened a new source of plunder, 
peculation, and bribery, which was not neglected. 
Revolutions were no longer necessary; succession 
supplied their places: and well the object agreed 
with the policy. Rules of succession could not be 
very well ascertained to an office like that of the 
Nabob, which was hereditary only by the appoint- 
ment of the Mogul. The issue by lawful wives would 
naturally be preferred by those who meant the quiet 
of the country. But a more doubtful title was pre- 
ferred, as better adapted to the purposes of extor- 
tion and peculation. This miserable succession was 
sold, and the eldest of the issue of Munny Begum, 
an harlot, brought in to pollute the harem of the 
seraglio, of whom you will hear much hereafter, was 
chosen. He soon succeeded to the grave. Another 
soil of the same prostitute succeeded to the same 
unhappy throne, and followed to the same untimely 
grave. Every succession was sold ; and between ve- 
nal successions and venal revolutions, in a very few 
years seven princes and six sales were seen succes- 
sively in Bengal. The last was a minor, the issue 

tit J.' 











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-f . i; 


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of a legitimate wife, admitted to succeed because a 
minor, and because there was none illegitimate loft. 
He was instantly stripped of the allowance of his pro- 
genitors, and reduced to a pension of 160,000 a year. 
He still exists, and continued to the end of Mr. 
Hastings's government to furnish constant sources 
of bribery and plunder to him and his creatures. 

The offspring of Munny Begum clinging, as his 
father did, to Nundcomar, they tore Nundcomar 
from bis side, as they had done from the side of his 
fkther, and carried him down as a sort of prisoner 
to Calcutta ; where, having had the weakness to be- 
come the first informer, he was made the first ex- 
ample. This person, pushed to the wall, and know- 
ing that the man he had to deal with was desperate 
and cruel in his resentments, resolves on the first 
blow, and enters before the Council a regular infor- 
mation in writing of bribery against Mr. Hastings. 
In his preface to that charge he excuses himself for 
what is considered to be an act equally insane and 
wicked, and as the one inexpiable crime of an In- 
dian, the discovery of the money he gives, — that 
Mr. Hastings had declaredly determined on his ruin, 
tiud tn accomplish it had newly associated himself 
with one Mohun Persaud, a name I wish your Lord- 
ships to remember, a bitter enemy of his, an infa- 
mous person, whom Mr. Hasting, knew to be such, 
and as such had turned him out of his house, — that 
Mr. Hastings had lately recalled, and held frequent 
communications with this Mohun Persaud, the sub- 
ject of which he had no doubt was his ruin. In 
the year 1775 he was hanged by those incorrupt Eng- 
lish judges who were sent to India by Parliament to 
protect the natives from oppression. 

I'' M ' 



Your Lordships will observe that this new sale 
of the office of miuisters succeeded to the sale of 
that of nabobs. All these varied and successive sales 
shook the country to pieces. As if those miserable 
exhausted provinces were to be cured of inanition 
by phlebotomy, while Cossim Ali was racking it 
above, the Company were drawing off all its nutri- 
ment below. A dreadful, an extensive, and most 
chargeable war followed. Half the northern force 
of India poured down Uko a torrent on Bengal, en- 
dangered our existence, and exhausted aU our re- 
sources. The war was the fruit of Mr. Hastings s 
cabals. Its termination, as usual, was the result 
of the military merit and the fortune of tins na- 
tion. Cossim Ali, after havmg been defeated by 
the military genius and spirit of England, (for the 
Adamses, Monroes, and others of that period, I be- 
lieve, showed as much skill and bravery as any of 
their predecessors,) in his flight swept away above 
three millions in money, jewels, or effects, out ot a 
country which he had plundered and exhausted by 
his unheard-of exactions. However, he fought his 
wav like a retiring lion, turning his face to his 
pursuers. He still fought along his frontier. His 
ability and his money drew to his cause the Su- 
bahdar of Oude, the famous Sujah ul Dowlah. The 
Mogul entered into these wars, and penetrated into 
the lower provinces on ope side, whilst Bulwant 
Sing, the Rajah of Benares, entered them on another. 
After various changes of party and changes of for- 
tune, the loss which began in the treachery of the 
civil service was, as I have before remarked, re- 
deemed by military merit. Many examples of the 
same sort have since been seen. 











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Whilst these things were transacted in India, the 
Court of Directors in London, hearing of so many 
changes, hearing of such an incredible mass of perfidy 
and venality, knowing that there was a general mar- 
ket made of the country and of the Company, that 
the flame of war spread from province to province, 
that, in proportion as it spread, the fire glowed with 
augmented fierceness, and that the rapacity which 
originally gave rise to it was following it in all its 
progress, — the Company, my Lords, alarmed not only 
for their acquisitions, but their existence, and finding 
themselves sinking lower and lower by every victory 
they obtained, thought it necessary at length to come 
to some system and some settlement. After compos- 
ing tlieir differences with Lord Clive, they scut him out 
to that country about the year 1765, in order, by his 
name, weight, authority, and v'^or of mind, to give 
some sort of form and stability to government, and to 
rectify tlie innumerable abuses which prevailed there, 
and particularly that great source of disorders, that 
fundamental abuse, presents : for the bribes by which 
all those revolutions were bought had not the name 
of conditions, stipulations, or rewards ; they even had 
the free and gratuitous style of presents. The receiv- 
ers contended that they were mere gratuities giveu 
for service done, or mere tokens of affection and 
gratitude to the parties. They may give them what 
names they please, and your Lordships will think of 
them what you please ; but they were the donations 
of misery to power, the gifts of sufferers to the op- 
pressors ; and consequently, where they prevailed, 
they left no certain property or fixed situation to any 
man in India, from tlie highest to the lowest. 

The Court of Directors sent out orders to enlarge 



tho servants' covenants with new and severe clauses, 
strongly prohibiting the practice of receiving presents. 
I^rd Clive himself had boon a large receiver of them. 
Yet, as it was in the moment of a revolution which 
gave them all they possessed, the Company would 
hoar no more of it. They sent him out to reform : 
whether they chose well or ill does not signify. 1 
think, upon the whole, they chose well ; because hit' 
name and authority could do much. They sent him 
out to redress the grievances of that country, and it 
was necessary he should bo well armed for that ser- 
vice. They sent him out with such powers as no 
servant of tho Company ever held before. I would 
not be understood here m my own character, much 
less in the delegated character in which I stand, to 
contend for any man in the totality of his conduct. 
Perhaps in some of his measures he was mistaken, 
and in some of his acts reprehensible ; but justice 
obliges mo to say, that the plan which he formed 
and the course which he pursued were in general 
great and well imagined, — that lie laid great foun- 
dations, if thoy had been properly built upon. For, 
in the first place, he composed all the neighboring 
countries torn to pieces by tlio wars of Cossim Ali, 
and quieted the apprehensiojis raised by the opin- 
ion of the boundless ambition of England. He took 
strong measures to put an end to a great many of the 
abuses that prevailed in the country subject to tho 
Company. He then proceeded to the upper provin- 
ces, and formed a plan which, for a military man, has 
great civil and political merit. He put a bound to 
.he aspiring spirit of tho Company's servants ; he lim- 
ited its conquests; he prescribed bounds to its am- 
bition. "First" (says he) " quiet the minds of the 




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country ; what you have obtained regulate ; make it 
known to India that you resolve to acquire no more." 

On this solid plan he fixed every prince that was 
concerned in the preceding wars, on the one side and 
on the other, in an happy and easy settlement. Ho 
restored Sujah ul Dowlai, who had been driven from 
his dominions by the military arm of Great Britain, 
to the rank of Vizier, and to the dominion of the ter- 
ritories of Oude. With a generosity that aston- 
ished all Asia, he reinstated this expelled enemy of 
his nation peaceably upon his throne. And this act 
of politic generosity did more towards quieting the 
minds of the people of Asia than all the terror, great 
as it was, of the English arms. At the same time. 
Lord Clive, generous to all, took peculiar care of our 
friends and allies. He took care of Bulwant Sing, 
the great R^ah of Benares, who had taken our part 
in the war. He secured him from the revenge of 
Sujah ul Dowlah. The Mogul had granted us the 
superiority over Bulwant Sing. Lord Clive reestab- 
lished him in a secure, easy independency. He con- 
firmed him, under the British g'laranty, in the rich 
principality which he held. 

The Mogul, the head of the Mussulman religion in 
India, and of the Indian empire, a head houoi'ed and 
esteemed even in its ruins, he procured to be rec- 
ognized by all the persons that were connected with 
his empire. The rents that ought to be paid to the 
Vizier of the Empire he gave to the Vizierate. Thus 
our alliances were cemented, our enemies were rec- 
onciled, all Asia was conciliated by our settlement 
with the king. To that unhappy fugitive king, driv- 
en from place to place, the sport of fortune, now an 
emperor and now a prisoner, prayed for in every 

•: i 



mosque iu which his authority was conspired against, 
one day opposed by the coin struck in his name and 
the other day sold for it,- to this descendant of Tam- 
erlane he allotted, with a decent share of royal digni- 
ty, an honorable fixed residence, where he might be 
useful and could not be dangerous. 

As to the Bengal provinces, he did no take for tho 
Company the viceroyalty, as Mr. Holwed would have 
persuaded, almost forced, the Company to do, but 
to satisfy the prejudices of the Mahomedans the 
country was left in the hands nominally of the bu- 
bah, or viceroy, who was to administer the criminal 
justice and the exterior forms of royalty. He oh- 
tained from the sovereign the d^anny. This is the 
great act of the constitutional entrance of the Com- 
pany into the body politic of India. It gave to the 
settlement of Bengal a fixed constitutional form, 
with a legal title, acknowledged and recognized now 
for the first time by all the natural powers of he 
country, because it arose from the charter of the 
undoubted sovereign. The dewamy, or high-stew- 
ardship, gave to the Company the collection and 
management of the revenue ; and in this modest 
and dvil character they appeared, not the oppressors 
but the protectors of the people. This scheme had 
all the real power, without any invidious appearance 
of if it gave them the revenue, without the parade 
of sovereignty. On this double foundation the gov- 
ernment was happily settled. The minds of the na- 
tives were quieted. The Company's territories and 
views were circumscribed. The arm of force was 
put out of sight. The imperial name covered every- 
thing. The power of the purse was in the h ;'d of 
the Company. The power of the sword was in effect 






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80, as thej contracted for the maintenance of the 
army. The Company had '* revenue of a million and 
a half. The Nabob had, indeed, fallen from any real 
and effective power, yet the dignity of the court was 
maintained. The prejudices and interests of the Ma- 
homedans, and particularly of their nobility, who 
had suffered more by this great revolution even 
than the old inhabitants of the country, were con- 
sulted ; for by this plan a revenue of 600,000Z. was 
settled on the viceroyalty, which was thus enabled 
to provide in some measure for those great families. 
The Company likewise, by this plan, in order to enjoy 
their revenues securely, and to avoid envy and mur- 
mur, put them into the hands of Mahomed Reza Khan, 
whom Lord Clive found in the management of affairs, 
and did not displace ; and he was now made deputy- 
steward to the Company, as he had been before 
lieutenant-viceroy to the Nabob. A British Resident 
at Moorshedabad was established as a control. The 
Company exercised their power over the revenue in 
the first instance through the natives, but the British 
Resident was in reality the great mover. 

If ever this nation stood in a situation of glory 
throughout Asia, it was in tliat moment. But, as I 
have said, some material errors and mistakes were 
committed. After the formation of this plan. Lord 
CUve unfortunately did not stay long enougli in the 
country to give consistency to the measures of refor- 
mation he had undertaken, but rapidly returned to 
England; and after his departure, the government 
that continued had not vigor or authority to support 
the settlement then made, and considerable abuses 
began to prevail in every quarter. Another capital 
period in our history here commences. Tliose who 



succeeded (though I believe one of them was one of 
the honestest men that ever served the Company, I 
mean Governor Verelst) had not weight enough to 
poise the system of the service, and consequently ma- 
ny abuses and grievances again prevailed. Super- 
visors were appointed to every district, as a check on 
the native collectors, and to report every abuse as it 
should arise. But they who were appointed to redress 
grievances were themselves accused of being guilty 
of them. However, the disorders were not of that 
violent kind which preceded Mr. Hastings's depart- 
ure, nor such as followed his return : no mercenary 
wars, no mercenary revolutions, no extirpation of 
nations, no violent convulsions in the revenue, no 
subversion of ancient houses, no general sales of any 
descriptions of men,— none of these, but certauily 
such grievances as made it necessary for the Company 
to bend out another commission in 1769, with instruc- 
tions pointing out the chief abuses. It was composed 
of Mr. Vansittart, Mr. Ford, and Mr. Scrafton. The 
unfortunate end of tliat commission is known to all 
the world ; but I mention it in order to state that the 
receipt of presents was considered as one of the 
grievances which then prevailed in India, and that 
the supervisors under that commission were ordered 
upon no account whatever to take presents. Upon 
the unfortunate catastrophe which happened, the 
Company was preparing to send out another for the 
rectification of these grievances, when Parliament 
thought it necessary to supersede that commission, to 
take the matter into their own hands, aud to appoint 
another commission in a Parliamentary way (of which 
Mr. Ilasting^i ^vas one) for the better government of 
that country. Mr. Hastings, as I must mention to 





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mi i|i 



your Lordships, soon after the deposition and resto- 
ration of JaflSer Ali Khftn, and before Lord Clive 
arrived, quitted for a while the scene in which he 
had been so mischievously employed, and returned to 
England to strengthen himself by those cabals which 
again sent him out with new authority to pursue the 
courses which were the natural sequel to his former 
proceedings. He returned to India with groat pow- 
er, indeed, — first to a seat in Council at Port St. 
George, and from thence to succeed to the Presidency 
of Port William. On him the Company placed their 
chief reliance. Happy had it been for them, happy 
for India and for England, if his conduct had been 
such as to spare your Lordships and the Commons 
the exhibition of this day ! 

When this government, with Mr. Hastings at the 
liead of it, was settled, Moorshedabad did still contin- 
ue the seat of the native government, and of all the 
collections. Here the Co: npany was not satisfied with 
placing a Resident at the «lurbar, which was the first 
step to our assuming the government in that country. 
These steps must be traced by your Lordships ; for I 
should never have given you this trouble, if it was not 
necessary to possess you clearly of the several pro- 
gressive steps by which the Company's government 
came to bo established and to supersede the native. 
The next step was the appointment of supervisors in 
every province, to oversee the native collector. The 
third was to establish a general Council of Revenue 
at Moorshedabad, to superintend the great steward, 
Mahomed Reza Khfin. In 1772 that Council by Mr. 
Hastings was overturned, and the whole management 
of the revenue brought to Calcutta. Mahomed Reza 
Khan, by orders of the Company, was turned out of 



all liis offices, and turned out for reasons and princi- 
pies which your Lordships will hereafter see ; and at 
last the dewanny was entirely taken out of the native 
hands, and settled in the Supreme Council and Presi- 
dency itself in Calcutta ; and so it remained until the 
year 1781, when Mr. Has'' -^ made another revolu- 
tion, took it out of the han. f the Supreme Council, 
in which the orders of the Cc oipany, an act of Parha- 
ment, and their own act had vested it, and put it into 
a subordinate councU: that is, it was entirely vested 
in himself. 

Now your Lordships see the whole of the revolu- 
tions. I have stated them, I trust, with perspicuity, 

— stated the grounds and principles upon which they 
were made,— stated the abuses that grew upon them, 

— and that every revolution produced its abuse. You 
saw the native government vanish by degrees, until 
it was reduced to a situation fit fo- nothing but to 
become a privr^ quisite, as it has been, to Mr. 
Hastings, and w ^o granted to whom he pleased. 
The English government succeeded, at the head of 
which Mr. Hastings was placed by an act of Parlia- 
ment, havmg before held the office of Pr^.sident of the 
Council,— the express object of both these nppoint- 
ments being to redress grievances ; and within these 
two periods of his power, as President and Governor- 
General, were those crimes committed of which he 
now stands accused. All this history is merely by 
way of illustration : his crimination begins from his 
nomination to the Presidency ; and we are to c^r^sid- 
er how he comported himself in that station, and in 
his office of Governor-General. 

The first thing, in considering the merits or demer- 






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its of any governor, is to have some test ' j which they 
are to be tried. And here, my Lords, we conceive, 
that, when a British governor is sent abroad, he is 
sent to ptirsue the good of the people as much as pos- 
sible in the spirit of the laws of this country, which 
in all respects intend their conservation, their happi- 
ness, and their prosperity. This is the principle up- 
on which Mr. Hastings was bound to govern, and up- 
on which he is to account for his conduct here. His 
rule was, what a British governor, intrusted with ihe 
power of this country, was bound to do or to forbrir. 
If he has performed and if he has abstained 
ought, dismiss him honorably acquitted fro * , 
bar; otherwise condemn* him. He may re •>> 

other principles and to other maxims ; but th's • 

try will force him to be tried by its laws. The law 
of this country recognizes that well-known crime 
called misconduct in office ; it is a head of the law 
of England, and, so far as inferior courts are compe- 
tent to try it, may be tried in them. Here your 
Lordships' competence is plenary : you are fully com- 
petent both to inquire into and to punish the offence. 
And, first, I am to state to your Lordships, by 
the direction of those whom I am bound to obey, the 
principles on which Mr. Hastings declares he has con- 
ducted his government, — principles which he has 
avowed, first in several letters written to the East 
India Company, next in a paper of defence delivered 
to the House of Commons explicitly, and more expli- 
citly in his defence before your Lordships. Nothing 
in Mr. Hastings's proceedings is so curious as his 
several defences ; and nothing in the defences is so 
singular as the principles upon which he proceeds. 
Your Lordships will h".ve to decide not only upon a 

\ \' 



large, connected, systematic train of misdemeanors, 
but an equally connected system of principles and 
maxims of government, invented to justify those mis- 
demeanors. He has brought them forward and 
avowed them in the face of day. He has boldly and 
insultingly thrown them in the face of the representa- 
tives of a free people, and we cannot pass them by 
without adopting them. I am directed to protest 
agains^t those grounds and principles uoon which he 
frames his defence; for, if those g) -ds are good 
and valid, they carry off a great deal a least, if not 
entirely, the foundation of our charge. 

My Lords, we contend that Mr. Hastings, as a 
British governor, ought to govern on British princi- 
ples, not by British forms, — God forbid ! — for if ever 
there was a care in which the letter kills and the spir- 
it gives life, U woiild be an attempt to introduce Brit- 
ish forms and the substance of despotic principles to- 
gether into any country. No ! We call for that spiiit 
of equity, that spirit of justice, that spirit of protec- 
tion, that spirit of lenity, which ought to characterize 
every British subject in power; and on these, and 
these principles only, he will be tried. 

But he has told your Lordships, in his defence, 
that actions in Asia do not bear the same moral quali- 
ties which the same actions would bear in Europe. 

My Lords, we positively deny that principle. I am 
authorized and called upon to deny it. And having 
stated at large what he means by saying that the 
same actions have not the same qualities in Asia and 
in Europe, we are to let your Lordships know that 
these gentlemen have formed a plan of geographical 
morality, by which the duties of men, in public and 
in private situations, are not to be governed by their 

\h 1 








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relation to the great Governor of the Universe, or by 
their relation to mankind, but by climates, degrees 
of longitude, parallels, not of life, but of latitudes : 
as if, when you have crossed the equinoctial, all the 
virtues die, as they say some insects die when they 
cross the line ; bs if there were a kind of baptism, 
like that practised by seamen, by which they unbap- 
tize themselves of all that they learned in Europe, and 
after which a new order and system of things com> 

This geographical morality we do protest againr' 
Mr. Hastings shall not scret Mm'jelf under it ; hit 
on this point I hope and trust many words will not be 
necessary to satisfy your Lordships. But we think it 
necessary, in justification of ourselves, to declare that 
the laws of morality are the same everywhere, and 
that there is no action whicii would pass for an act 
of extortion, of peculation, of bribery, and of oppres- 
sion in England, that is not an act of extortion, of 
peculation, of bribery, and oppression in Europe, 
Asia, Africa, and all the world over. This X contend 
for not in the technical forms of it, but I contend for 
it in the substance. 

Mr. Hastings comes before your Lordships not as a 
British governor answering to a British tribunal, but 
as a subahdar, as a bashaw of three tails. He says, 
*' I had an arbitrary power to exercise : I exercised it. 
Slaves I found the people: slaves they are, — they 
are so by their constitution ; and if they are, I did 
not make it for them. I was unfortunately bound to 
exercise this arbitrary power, and accordingly I did 
exercise it. It was disagreeable to me, but I did 
er'^rcise it ; and no other power can be exercised in 
that country." This, if it be true, is a plea in bar. 



But I trust and hope your Lordships will not judge 
by laws and institutions which you do not know, 
against those laws and institutions which you do 
know, and under whoso power and authority Mr. 
Hastings went out to India. Can your Lordsliips 
patiently hear what we have heard with indignation 
enough, and what, if there were nothing else, would 
call these principles, as well as the actions which are 
justified on such principles, to your Lordships' bar, 
that it may be known whether the peers of England 
do not sympathize with the Commons in their detes- 
tation of such doctrine ? Think of an English gov- 
ernor tried before you as a British subject, and yet 
declaring that he governed on the principles of arbi- 
trary power ! His plea is, that he did govern there 
on arbitrary and despotic, and, as he supp jses. Oriental 
principles. And as this plea is boldly avowed and 
maintained, and as, no do^^bt, all his conduct was 
perfectly correspondent to these principles, the princi- 
ples and the conduct must be tried together. 

If your Lordships will now permit me, I will state 
one of the many places in which he has avowed these 
principles as tho basis and foundation of all his 
conduct. " The sovereignty which they assumed, it 
fell to my lot, very unexju^ctedly, to exert; and 
whether or not such power, or powers of that nature, 
were delegated to me by any provisions of any act of 
Parliament, I confess myself too little of a lawyer to 
pronounce. I only know that the acceptance of the 
sovereignty of Benares, &c., is not acknowledged or 
admitted by any act of Parliament ; and yet, by the 
particular interference of the majority of the C< uu- 
cil, the Company is clearly and indisputably seized of 
that sovereignty." So that this gentleman, be ause 

i ; 








I: J r 

Jio is not a lawyer, nor clothed with those robes which 
distinguish, and well distinguish, the learning of this 
country, is not to know anything of his duty ; and 
whether he was bound by any, or what act of Parlia- 
ment, is a thing he is not lawyer enough to know ! 
Now, if your Lordships will suffer the laws to be 
l)roken by those who are not of the long robe, I am 
afraid those of the long robe will have none to pun- 
ish but those of their own profession. He therefore 
goes to a law he is better acquainted with, — that is, 
the law of arbitrary power and force, if it deserves 
to be called by the name of law. " If, ♦herefore," 
says he, '* the tovereiffnty of Benares, as ceded to us 
by the Vizier, have any rights whatever annexed to 
it, and be not a mere empty word without meaning, 
those rights must be such as are held, countenanced, 
and established by the law, custom, and usage of the 
Mogul empire, and not by the provisions of any Brit- 
ish act of Parliament hitherto enacted. Tho»e rights, 
and none other, I have been the involuntary instru- 
irent of enforcing. And if any future act of Parlia- 
rient shall positively or by implication tend to anni- 
hilate those very rights, or their exertion as I have 
exerted them, I much fear that the boasted sovereign- 
ty of Benares, which was held up as an acquisition, 
dmost obtruded on the Company against my consent 
and opinion, (for I acknowledge that even then I 
foresaw many difficulties and inconveniences in its 
future exercise,) — I fear, I say, that this sovereignty 
will be found a burden instead of a benefit, a heavy 
clog rather than a precious ge"- 'o its present possess- 
ors : I mean, unless the whole of our territory in that 
quarter shall be rounded and made an uniform com- 
pact body by one grand and systematic arrangement, 





— tuch an arrangement as shall do away all the 
mischiefs, doubts, and inconveniences (both to the 
governors and the governed) arising from the variety 
of tenures, rights, and claims in all cases of landed 
property and feudal jurisdiction in India, from the 
informality, invalidity, and instability of all engage- 
ments in so divided and unsettled a state of society, 
and from the unavoidable anarchy and confusion of 
different laws, religions, and prejudices, moral, civil, 
and po. ^^al, all jum' -d ♦ogether in one unnatural 
and discordant mass. 

" Every par of Hii.austan has been constantly ex- 
posed to i.he> and similar disadvantages ever since 
th" Mahomed > conquests. The Hindoos, who never 
ini " crated v,\*<\ their conquerors, were kept in or- 
der only by tiie strong hand of power. The con- 
stant necessity of similar excjrtions would increase at 
once their energy and extent ; so that rebellion itself 
is the parent and promoter of despotism. Sover- 
eignty in India impli'.d nothing else. For I know 
not how we can form an estimate of its powers, but 
from its visible effects; and those are everywhere 
the same, from Cabool to Assam. The whole history 
of Asia is nothing more than precedents to prove the 
invariable e jrcise of arbitrary power. To all this I 
strongly alluded in the minutes I delivered in Coun- 
cil, when the treaty with the new Vizier was on foot 
in 1775; and I wished to make Cheyt Sing inde- 
pendent, because in India dependence included a 
thousand evils, many of which I enumerated at that 
time, and they are entered in the ninth clause of the 
first section of this charge. I knew the powers with 
which an Indian sovereignty is armed, and the dan- 
gers to which -ibutaries are exposed. I knew, that, 









from the history of Asia, and from the very nature 
of mankind, the subjects of a despotic empire are al- 
ways vigilant for the moment to rebel, and the sov- 
ereign is ever jealous of rebellious intentions. A 
zemindar is an Indian subject, and as such exposed 
to the common lot of his fellows. The mean and de- 
praved state of a mere zemindar is therefore this very 
dependence above mentioned on a despotic govern- 
ment, this very proneness to shake off his allegiance, 
and this very exposure to continual danger from his 
sovereign's jealousy, which are consequent on the 
political state of Hindostanic governments. Bulwant 
Sing, if he had been, and Cheyt Sing, as long as 
he was a zemindar, stood exactly in this mean and 
depraved state by the constitution of his country. I 
did not make it for him, but would have secured 
him from it. Those who made him a zemindar en- 
tailed upon him the consequences of so mean and 
depraved a tenure. Aliverdy Kh&n and Cossim Ali 
fined all their zen^.ndars on the necessities of war, 
and on every pretence either of court necessity or 
court extravagance." 

My Lords, you have now heard the principles on 
which Mr. Hastings governs the part of Asia subject- 
ed to the British empire. You have heard his opin- 
ion of the mean and depraved state of those who are 
subject to it. You have heard his lecture upon arbi- 
trary power, which he states to be the constitution of 
Asia. You hear the application he makes of it ; and 
you hear the practices which he employs to justify it, 
and who the persons were on whose authority he re- 
lies, and whose example he professes to follow. In 
the first place, your Lordships will be astonished at 
the audacity with which he speaks of his own admin- 




istration, as if he was reading a speculative lecture 
on the evUs attendant upon some vicious system of 
foreign government in which he had no sort of con- 
cern whatsoever. And then, when in this speculative 
way he has established, or thinks he has, the vices of 
the government, he conceives he has found a suffi- 
cient apology for his own crimes. And if he violates 
the most solemn engagements, if he oppresses, extorts, 
and robs, if he imprisons, confiscates, banishes at his 
sole will and pleasure, when we accuse him for his 
ill-treatment of the people committed to him as a 
sacred trust, his defence is, — " To be robbed, violat- 
ed, oppressed, is their privilege. Let the constitu- 
tion of their country answer for it. I did not make 
it for them. Slaves I found them, and as slaves I 
have treated them. I was a despotic prince. Des- 
potic governments are jealous, and the subjects prone 
to rebellion. This very proneness of the subject to 
shake off his allegiance exposes him to continual dan- 
ger from his sovereign's jealousy, and this is conse- 
quent on the political state of Hiudostanic govern- 
ments." He lays it down as a rule, that despotism 
is the genuine constitution of India, that a disposition 
to rebellion in the subject or dependent prince is the 
necessary effect of this despotism, and that jealousy 
and its consequences naturally arise on the part of 
the sovereign, — that the government is everything, 
and the subject nothing, — that the great landed men 
are in a mean and depraved state, and subject to ma- 
ny evils. 

Such a state of things, if true, would warrant con- 
clusions directly opposite to those which Mr. Hastings 
means to draw from them, both argumentatively and 
practically, first to influence his conduct, and then to 
bottom his defence of it. 


I J 







\ t:. 

\ f, 


Perhaps you will imagine that the man who avows 
these principles of arbitrary government, and pleads 
Uiem as the justification of acts which nothing else can 
justify, is of opinion that they are on the whole good 
for the people over whom they are exercised. The 
very reverse. He mentions them as horrible things, 
tending to intiict on the people a thousand evUs, 
and to bring on the ruler a continual train of dan- 
gers. Tot he states, that your acquisitions in India 
will be a detriment instead of an advantage, if you 
destroy arbitrary power, imless you can reduce all 
the religious establishments, all the civil institutions, 
and tenures of land, into one uniform mass, — that 
is, unless by acts of arbitrary power you extinguish 
all the laws, rights, and religious principles of the 
people, and force them to an uniformity, and on 
that uniformity build a system of arbitrary power. 

But nothing is more false than that despotism is 
the constitution of any country in Asia that we are 
acquainted with. It is certainly not true of any 
Mahomedan constitution. But if it were, do your 
Lordships really think that the nation would bear, 
that any human creature would bear, to hear an 
English governor defend himself on such principles ? 
or, if he can defend himself on such principles, is it 
possible to deny the conclusion, that no man in India 
has a security for anything, but by being totally in- 
dependent of the British government ? Here he has 
declared his opinion, that he is a despotic prince, 
that he is to use arbitrary power ; and of course all 
his acts are covered with that shield. •' I know" 
says he, "<Ae constitution of Asia only from its prac- 
tice." Will your Lordships submit to hear the cor- 
rupt practices of mankind xiiade the principles of 


government? No! it wiU be your pride and glory 
to teach men intrusted with power, that, in their use 
of it, they are to conform to principles, and not to 
draw their principles from the corrupt practice of 
any man whatever. Was there ever heard, or could 
it be conceived, that a governor would dare to heap 
up all the evil practices, all the cruelties, oppressions, 
extortions, corruptions, briberies, of all the ferocious 
usurpers, desperate robbers, thieves, cheats, and jug- 
glers, that ever had office, from one end of Asia to an- 
other, and, consolidating all this mass of the crimes 
and absurdities of barbarous dommatiou into one 
code, esUblish it as the whole duty of an Eughsh 
governor ? I believe that till this time so audacious 
a thing was never attempted by man. 

He have arbitrary power! My Lords, the East 
India Company have not arbitrary power to give 
him ; the king has no arbitrary power to give him ; 
your Lordships have not; nor the Commons, nor 
the whole legislature. We have no arbitrary power 
to give, because arbitrary power is a thmg which 
neither any man can hold nor any man can give. 
No man can lawfully govern himself according to 
his own will ; much less can one person be governed 
by the will of another. We are all born m subjec- 
tion,— all born equally, high and low, governors and 
governed, in subjection to one great, immutable, pre- 
existent law, prior to all our devices and prior to 
all our contrivances, paramount to all our ideas and 
all our sensations, antecedent to our very existence, 
by which we are knit and connected in the eternal 
frame of the universe, out of which we cannot stir. 
This great law does not arise from our conven- 
tions or compacts ; on the contrary, it gives to our 










conventions and compacts all the force and sanction 
they can have. It does not arise from our rain in- 
stitutions. Every good gift is of God; all po^ror 
is of God; and He who has given the power, and 
from whom alone it originates, will never suflfer the 
exercise of it to be practised upon any less solid 
foundation than the power itself. If, then, all do- 
minion of man over man is the efibct of the Divine 
disposition, it is bound by the eternal laws of Him 
that gave it, with which no human authority can 
dispense, — neither he that exercises it, nor even 
those who are subject to it; and if they were mad 
enough to make an express compact that should re- 
lease their magistrate from his duty, and should de- 
clare their lives, liberties, and properties dependent 
upon, not rules and laws, but his mere capricious 
will, that covenant would be void. The acceptor of 
it has not his authority increased, but he has his 
crime doubled. Therefore can it be imagined, if 
this be true, that He will suffer this great gift of 
gcvernment,^ the greatest, the best, that was ever 
given by God to mankind, to be the plaything and 
the sport of the feeble will of a man, who, by a 
blasphemous, absurd, and petulant usurpation, would 
place his own feeble, contemptible, ridiculous will in 
the place of the Divine wisdom and justice ? 

The title of conquest makes no difference ..u all. 
No conquest can give such a right; for conquest, 
that is, force, cannot convert its own injustice into 
a just title, by which it may rule others at its pleas- 
ure. By conquest, which is a more immediate des- 
ignation of the hand of God, the conqueror succeeds 
to all the painful duties and subordii j,tion to the 
power of God which belonged to the sovereign whom 

» iv 


he has displa 1, just as if he had come iu by the 
positive law oi some descent or some election, lo 
this at least he is strictly bound: he ou-ht to gov- 
ern them as he governs his o^r. subjects. But 
every wise conqueror has gone much further than 
ho was bound to go. It has been his ambition and 
his policy to reconcile the va-iquishei to his fortune, 
to show that they had gained by the -.hange, to con- 
vert their momentary suffering into a long benefat, 
and to draw from the humiliation of his eu-jnaes an 
accession to his own glory. This has been so con- 
stant ^\ practice, that it is to repeat the histories 
of all pontic conquerors in all nations and in all 
times ; and I will not so much distrust your Lord- 
ships' enlightened and discriminating studies and 
correct memories as to allude to one of them. I 
will only show you that the Court of Directors, 
under whom he served, has adopted that idea,— 
that they constantly inculcated it :o him, and to 
Ul the servants, — that they run a paral etween 
their own and the native government, and. pposing 
it to be very evil, did not l;old it up as an example 
to be followed, but as an abuse to be corrected,— 
that they never made it a question, whether India 
is to be improved by English law ard liberty, or 
English law and liberty vitiated by Indian corrup- 
tion. . . . ■. 

No, my Lords, this arbitrary power is not to be 
had by conquest. "K^r can any sovereign have it 
by succession; for ao man can succeed to fraud, 
rapine, and violence. Neither by compact, covenant, 
or submission, — for men cannot covenant themselves 
out of their rights and their duties, — nor by any 
other means, can arbitrary power be conveyed to 


1 i 







■ Mi, 


any mn". Those who give to others such lights 
perform acts that are void as they are given, — good 
indeed and valid only as tending to subject them* 
selves, and those who act with them, to the Divine 
displeasure ; because morally there can be no such 
power. Those who give and those who receive ar* 
bitrary power are alike criminal; and there is no 
man but is bound to resist it to the best of his 
power, wherever it shall show its face to the world. 
It is a crime to bear it, when it can be rationally 
shaken oft'. Nothing but absolute impotence can 
justify men in not resisting it to the utmost of their 

Law and arbitrary power are in eternal enmity. 
Name me a magistrate, and I will name property ; 
name me power, and I will name protection. It 
is a contradiction in terms, it is blasphemy in re* 
ligion, it is wickedness In politics, to say that any 
man can have arbitrary power. In every patent 
of office the duty is included. For what else does 
a magistrate exist? To suppose for power is an 
absurdity in idea. Judges are guided and gov- 
erned by the eternal laws of justice, to which we 
are all subject. We may bite our chains, if we 
will, but we shall be made to know ourselves, and 
be taught that man is born to be governed by law ; 
and he that wUl substitute will in the place of it 
is an enemy to God. 

Despotism does not in the smallest degree abro- 
gate, alter, or lessen any one duty of any one re- 
lation of life, or weaken the force or obligation of 
any one engagement or contract whatsoever. Des- 
potism, if it means anything that is at all defensi- 
ble, means a mode of government bound by no 

' .- r 



written rules, and coerced by no controlling magis- 
tracies or well-settled orders in the stato. But if 
it has no written law, it neither does nor can cancel 
the primeval, indefeasible, unalterable law of Natuie 
and of nations ; and if no magistracies control its 
exertions, those exertions must derive their limita- 
tion and direction either from the equity and mod- 
eration of the ruler or from downright revolt on 
the part of the subject by rebellion, divested of all its 
criminal qualities. The moment a sovereign removes 
the idea of security and protection from his subjecLs, 
and declares that he is everything and they nothing, 
when he declares that no contract he makes with 
them can or ought to bind him, he then declares 
war upon them: he is no longer sovereign; they 
are no longer subjects. 

No man, therefore, has a right to arbitiary pow- 
er. But the thought which is suggested by tlie de- 
pravity of him who brings it forward is 8uppori;ed 
by a gross confusion of ideas and principles, which 
your Lordships well know how to discern and sepa- 
rate. It is manifest, that, in the Eastern govern- 
ments, and the Western, and in all governments, the 
supreme power in the state cannot, whilst that state 
subsists, be rendered criminally responsible for its ac- 
tions : otherwise it would not be the supreme power. 
It is certainly true : but the actions do not change 
their nature by losing their responsibility. The ar- 
bitrary acts which are unpunished are not the less 
vicious, though none but God, the conscience, and 
the opinions of mankind take cognizance of them. 

It is not merely so in this or that government, 
but in all countries. The king in his country is 
undoubtedly unaccountable for his actions. The 


I i 




1 ir 


- 'Ut 


: >i*' 

Houso of Lords, if it should ever exercise, COod for- 
bid I should suspect it would ever do what it has 
never done!) — but if it should ever abuse its judi- 
cial power, and give such a judgment as it ought not 
to give, whether from fear of popular clamor on the 
one hand, or predilection to the prisoner on the other, 
— if they abuse their judgments, there is no calling 
them to an accouat for it. And so, if the Commons 
should abuse their power, nay, if they should have 
been so greatly delinquent as not to have prosecut- 
ed this offender, they could not be accountable for 
it ; there is no punishing them for their acts, because 
we exercise a part of the Buprem^ power. But are 
they less criminal, less rebellious against the Divine 
Majesty ? are they less hateful to man, whose opin- 
ions they ought to cultivate as far as they are just ? 
No : till society fall into a state of dissolution, they 
cannot be accountable for their acts. But it is from 
confounding the unaccountable character inherent in 
the supreme power with arbitrary power, that all this 
confusion of ideas has arisen. 

Even upon a supposition that arbitrary power can 
exist anywhere, which we deny totally, and which 
your Lordships will be the first and proudest to 
deny, still, a,bsolute, suprem. dominion was never 
conferred or delegated by you, — much less, arbitra- 
ry power, which never did in any case, nor ever 
will in any case, time, or country, produce any one 
of the ends of just government. 

It is true that the supreme power in every constitu- 
tion of government must be absolute, and this may 
be corrupted into the arbitrary. But all good con- 
stitutions have established certain fixed rules for the 
exercise of their functions, which they rarely or ever 


depart from, and which rules form the security against 
that worst of evils, the government A will and force 
instead of wisdom and justice. 

But though the supreme power is in a situation re- 
sembling arbitrary, yet never was there heard of in 
the history of the world, that is, in that mixed chaos 
of human wisdom and folly, such a thing as an tn- 
termediate arbitrary power, — that is, of an officer of 
government who is to exert authority over the people 
without any law at all, and who is to have the benefit 
of all laws, and all foims of law, when he is called to 
an account. For that is to let a wild beast (for such 
is a man without law) loose upon the people to prey 
oil them at his pleasure, whilst all the laws which 
ought to secure the people against the abuse of power 
are employed to screen that abuse against the cries of 

the people. 

This is de facto the state of our Indian government. 
But to establish it so in right as well as in fact is a 
thing left for us to begin with, the first of mankind. 
For a subordinate arbitrary or even despotic power 
never was heard of in right, claim, or authorized 
practice ; least of all has it been heard of in the 
Eastern governments, where all the instances of se- 
verity and cruelty fall upon governors and persons 
intrusted with power. This would be a gross contra- 
diction. Before Mr. Hastings, none ever came before 
his superiors to claim it ; because, if any such thing 
could exist, he claims the very power of that sovereign 
who calls him to account. 

But suppose a man to come before us, denying all 
the benefits of law to the people under him, — and 
yet, when he is called to account, to claim all the 
benefits of that law which was made to screen manr 



1 1 






kind from the excesses of power : such a claim, I will 
venture to say, is a monster that never existed, except 
in the wild imagination of some theorist. It cannot 
be admitted, because it is a perversion of the funda- 
mental principle, that every power given for the pro- 
tection of the people below should be responsible to 
the power above. It is to suppose that the people 
shall have no laws with regard to him, yet, when A« 
comes to be tried, he shall claim the protection of 
those laws which were made to secure the people from 
his violence, — that he shall claim a fair trial, an 
equitable hearing, every advantage of counsel, (God 
forbid he should not have them !) yet that the peo- 
ple under him shall have none of those advantages. 
The reverse is the principle of every just and rational 
proced"re. For the people, who havj nothing to u. ' 
but their natural faculties, ought to be gently dealt 
with ; but those who are intrusted with an artificial 
and instituted authority have in their hands a great 
deal of the force of other people ; and as their temp- 
tations to injustice are greater, so their means are 
infinitely more efiectual for mischief by turning the 
powers given for the preservation of society to its 
destruction: so that, if an arbitrary procedure be 
justifiable, (a strong one I am sure is,) it is when 
used against those who pretend to use it against 

My Lords, I will venture to say of the governments 
of Asia, that none of them ever had an arbitrary 
power; and if any governments had an arbitrary 
power, they cannot delegate it to any persons under 
them: that is, they cannot so delegate it to others 
as not to leave them accountable on the principles 
upon which it was given. As this is a contradiction 




in terms, a gross absurdity, as well as a monstrous 
wickedness, let me say, for the honor of human nature, 
that, although undoubtedly we may speak it with the 
pride of England that we have better institutions for 
the preservation of the rights of men than any other 
country in the world, yet I will venture to say that 
no country has wholly meant, or ever meant, to give 
this power. 

As it cannot exist in right on any rational and solid 
principles of government, so neither does it exist in 
the constitution of Oriental governments, — and I do 
insist upon it, that Oriental governments know nothing 
of arbitrary power. I have taken as much pains as I 
could to examine into the constitutions of them. I 
have been endeavoring to inform myself at all times 
on this subject ; of late my duty has led me to a 
more minute inspection of them ; and I do challenge 
the whole race of man to show me any of the Orient- 
al governors claiming to themselves a right to act by 
arbitrary will. 

The greatest part of Asia is under Mahomedan gov- 
ernments. To name a Mahomedan government is 
to name a government by law. It is a law enforced 
by stronger sanctions than any law that can bind a 
Christian sovereign. Their law is believed to be given 
by God ; and it has the double sanction of law and of 
religi'- " which the prince is no more authorized 

to dit iJ'vn any one else. And if any man will 

product, Che Koran to me, and will 1 at show me one 
text in it that authorizes in any degi an arbitrary 
power in the government, T ^U confess that I have 
read that book, and been coiwersant in the affairs of 
Asia, in vain. There is not such a syllable in it ; but, 
on the contrary, against oppressors by name every 



"H -I 





I I 


letter of that lav is fulminatod. Tliere arc interpret- 
ers established throughout all Asia to cz|)laiii that 
law, an order of priesthood, whom they call men of 
the law. Tliese men ara cf'nservators of the law ; and 
to enable them to preserve it »" its perfection, they 
are secured from the resentment of the sovereign : 
for he cannot touch them. Even their kings are not 
always vested with a real supremo power, but the 
government is in some degree republican. 

To bring this point a little nearer home, — since 
we are challenged thus, since we are led into Abia, 
since we are called upon to make gf>od our charge 
on the principles of the governments there, rather 
than on those of our own country, (which I trust 
your Lordships will oblige him finally to be gov- 
erned by, puffed up as he is with the insolence of 
Asia,) — the nearest to us of the governments he 
appeals to is that of the Grand Seignior, the Em- 
peror of the Turks. — Ee an arbitrary power ! Why, 
he has not the supreme power of his own country. 
Every one knows that the Grand Seignior is exalt- 
ed high in titlet, as our prerogative lawyers exalt 
an abstract sovereign, — and he cannot be exalted 
higher in our books. I say he is destitute of the 
first character of sovereign power: he cannot lay 
a tax upon his people. Tlio next part in which he 
misses of a sovereign power is, that he cannot dis- 
pose of the life, of the property, or of the liberty of 
any of his subjects, but by what is called the fetwah, 
or sentence of the law. He cannot declare peace 
or war without the same sentence of the law: so 
much is he, more than European sovereigns, a sub- 
ject of strict law, that he cannot declare war or 
peace without it. Then, if he can lieither touch 

^ --^--^ 



life nor property, if he cannot lay a tax on his sub- 
jecta, or declare peace or war, I leave it to your 
LordshJpn* judgment, whotlicr ho can bo called, ac- 
cording to the principles of that constitution, nn 
arbitrary power. A Turkish sovereign, if he sliould 
be judged by the body of that law to have acted 
against its principles, (unless he happens to be so- 
cured l>y a faction of the soldiery,) is liable to bo 
deposed on the sentence of that law, and his suc- 
cessor comes in under the strict limitations of 
tlie ancient law of that country: neither can he 
hold his place, disf se of his succession, or talte 
any one step whattj^^r, without being bound by law. 
Thus mucll may be said, when gentlemen talic of 
the affairs of Abia, as to the nearest of Asiatic sov- 
ereigns: and he is more Asiatic than European, 
he is a Mahomedan sovereign ; and no Mahome- 
dan is bom who can exercise any arbitrary power 
at all, consistently with their constitution ; iusomuch 
that this chief magistrate, who is the higliest exec- 
utive power among them, is the very person wlio, 
by the constitution of the country, is the most fet- 
tered by law. 

Corruption is the true cause of the loss of all 
the benefits of the constitution of that country. 
The practice of Ada, as the gentleman at your bar 
has thought fit to say, is what he holds to; the 
constitution he flies away from. The question is, 
whether you will take the constitution of tlie coun- 
try as your rule, or the base practices of those 
usurpers, robbers, and tyrants who have subverted it. 
Undoubtedly, much blood, murder, false imprison- 
ment, mucll peculation, cruelty, and robbery are to 
be found in Asia; and if, instead of going to the sa- 






] . A 



cred laws of the country, he chooses to resort to the 
iniquitous practices of it, and practices authorized 
only by public tumult, contention, war, and riot, ho 
may indeed find as clear an acquittal in the practices 
as he would find condemnation in the institutions 
of it. He has rejected the law of England. Your 
Lordships will not sufiFer it. God forbid! For my 
part, I should have no sort of objection to let him 
choose his law, — Mahomedan, Tartarian, Gentoo. 
But if he disputes, as he does, the authority of an 
act of Parliament, let him state to me that law to 
which he means to be subject, or any law which he 
knows that will justify his actions. I am not au- 
thorized to say that I shall, even in that case, give up 
what is not in me to give up, because I represent 
an authority of which I must stand in awe ; but, for 
myself, I shall confess that I am brought to public 
shame, and am not fit to manage the great interests 
committed to my charge. I therefore again repeat of 
that Asiatic government with which we are best ac- 
quainted, which has been constituted more in obedi- 
ence to the laws of Mahomet than any other, that 
the sovereign cannot, agreeably to that constitution, 
exercise any arbitrary power whatever. 

The next point for us to consider is, whether or 
no the Mahomedan constitution of India authorizes 
that power. The gentleman at your Lordships' bar 
has thought proper to say, that it will be happy 
for India, (though soon after he tells you it is an 
happiness they can never enjoy,) " when the despot- 
ic institutes of Genghiz Khan or Tamerlane shall 
give place to the liberal spirit of a British legisla- 
ture ; and," says he, " I shall be amply satisfied in 
my present prosecution, if it shall tend to hasten 





the approach of an event so beneficial to the great 
interests of mankind." 

My Lords, you have seen what he says about 
an act of Parliament. Do you not now think it 
rather an extraordinary thing, that any British sub- 
iect should, in vindication of the authority which 
he has exercised, here quote the names and insti- 
tutes, as he calls them, of fierce conquerors, of men 
who were the scourges of mankind, whose power 
was a power which they held by force only? 

As to the institutes of Genghiz Kh^n, which he 
calls arbitrary institutes, I never saw them. If he 
has that book, he will oblige the public by producing 
it I have seen a book existing, called Yassa of 
Genghiz Khan ; the other I never saw. If there be 
any part of it to justify arbitrary power, he will pro- 
duce it. But if we may judge by those ten precepts 
of Gen<Thiz Khan which we have, there is not a shad- 
ow of arbitrary power to be found in any one of them. 
Institutes of arbitrary power ! Wlv, if there is arbi- 
trary power, there can be no institutes. 

As to the institutes of Tamerlane, here they are in 
their original, and here is a translation. I have care- 
fully read every part of these institutes ; and if any 
one shows me one word in them in which the prince 
claims in himself arbitrary power, I again repeat, 
that I shall for my own part confess that I have 
brought myself to great shame. There is no book 
in the world, I believe, which contains nobler, more 
just, more manly, more pious principles of government 
than this book, called the Institutions of Tamerlane. 
Nor is there one word of arbitrary power in it, much 
less of that arbitrary power which Mr. Hastings sup- 
poses himself justified by, -namely, a delegated. 








Bubordinate, arbitrary power. So far was that great 
prince from permitting this gross, violent, interme- 
diate arbitrary power, that I will venture to say the 
chief thing by which he has recommended himself to 
posterity was a most direct declaration of all the 
wrath and indignation of tlie supreme government 
against it. But here is the book. It contains the 
institutes of the founder of the Mogul empire, left as 
a sacred legacy to his posterity, as a rule for theu* 
conduct, and as a means of preserving their power. 

" Be it known to my fortunate sons, the conquerors 
of kingdoms to my mighty descendants, the lords of 
the earth, that, since I have hope in Almighty God 
that many of my children, descendants, and posterity 
shall sit upon the throne of power and regal author- 
ity, upon this account, having established laws and 
regiilations for the well governing of my dominions, 
I have collected together those regulations and laws 
as a model for others, to the end that, every one of 
my children, descendants, and posterity acting agree- 
ably thereto, my power and empire, which I acquired 
through hardships and diflRculties and perils and 
bloodshed, by the Divine favor, and by the influence 
of the holy religion of Mahomet, (God's peace be up- 
on him I ) and with the assistance of the powerful 
descendants and illustrious followers of that prophet, 
may be by them preserved. And let them make 
these regulations the rule of their conduct in the af- 
fairs of their empire, that the fortune and the power 
which shall descend from me to them may be sa'. 
from discord and dissolution. 

" Now, therefore, be it known to my sons, the for- 
tunate and the illustrious, to my descendants, the 



mighty subduers of kingdoms, that, in like manner 
as I by twelve maxims, which I established as the 
rule of my conduct, attained to regal dignity, and 
with the assistance of these maxims conquered and 
governed kingdoms, and decorated and adorned the 
throne of my empire, let them also act according to 
these regulations, and preserve the splendor of mine 
and their dominions. 

" And among the rules which I established for the 
support of my glory and empire, the firgt was this, 

that I promoted the worship of Almighty God, 

and propagated the religion of the sacred Mahomet 
throughout the ■^vmld, and at all times and in all 
places supported the true faith. 

" Secondly. "With the people of the twelve classes 
and tribes I conquered and governed kingdoms, and 
with them I strengthened *he pillars of my fortune, 
and from them I formed my assembly. 

" Thirdly. By consultation and deliberation and 
provident measures, by caution and by vigilance, I 
vanquished armies, and I reduced kingdoms to my 
authority. And I carried on the business of my em- 
pire by complying with times and occasions, and by 
generosity, and by patience, and by policy; and I 
acted with courteousness towards my friends >xvA 
towards my enemies. 

" Fourthly. By order and by discipline I regulated 
the concerns of my government ; and by discipline 
and by order I so lirmly established my authority, 
that the emirs and the viziers and the soldiers and 
the subjects could not aspire beyond their respective 
degrees ; and every one of them was the keeper of 
his own station. 

" Fifthly. I gave encouragement to my emirs and 








I ii 

to my soldiers, and with money and with jewels I 
made them glad of heart; and I permitted tl.em to 
come into the banquet; and in th . leld of blood 
they hazarded their lives. And I withheld not from 
them my gold nor my silver. And I educated and 
trained them to arms ; and to alleviate their suffer- 
ings, I myself shared in their labors and in their 
hardships, until with the arm of fortitude and reso- 
lution, and with the unanimity of my chiefs and my 
generals and my warriors, by the edge of the sword, 
I obtained possession of the thrones of seven-and- 
twenty kings, and became the king and ruler 
of the kingdoms of Eraun, and of Tooraun, and of 
Room, and of Mughrib, and of Shaum, and of Mis- 
6ur, and of Erauk-a-Arrab, and of Ajjum, and of Mau- 
zinduraun, and of Kylaunaut, and of Shurvaunaut, 
and of Azzurbauejaun, and of Fauris, and of Khorau- 
saun, and of the Dusht of Jitteh, and the Dusht of 
Kipchauk, and of Khauruzm, and Khuttun, and of 
Kauboolistaun, and of Hindostaun, and of Bauktur 


" And when I clothed myself in the robe of em- 
pire, I shut my eyes to safety, and to the repose which 
is found on the bed of ease. And from the twelfth 
year of my age I travelled over countries, and com- 
b-^^ed difficulties, and formed enterprises, and van- 
quished armies, and experienced mutinies amongst 
my officers and ir;y soldiers, and was familiarized to 
the language of disobedience ; and I opposed them 
with policy and with fortitude, and I hazarded my 
person in the hour of danger; until in the end I van- 
quished kingdoms and empires, and established the 
glory of my name. 
« Sixthli/. By justice and equity I gained the affec- 


IV 4 


tions of the people of God ; and I extended my clem- 
ency to the guilty as well as to the innocent; and I 
passed that sentence which truth required ; and by 
benevolence I gained a place in the hearts of men ; 
and by rewards and punishments I kept both my 
troops and my subjects divided between hope and 
fear. And I compassionated the lower ranks of my 
people, and those who were distressed. And I gave 
gifts to the soldiers. 

" And I delivered the oppressed from the hand of 
the oppressor; and after proof of the oppression, 
whether on the property or the person, the decision 
which I passed between them was agreeable to the 
sacred law. And I did not cause any one person to 
suffer f the guilt of another. 

" T vho had done me iiyuries, *'-o had attacked 

my pe. in battle, and had counteracted my schemes 
and enterprises, when they threw themselves on my 
mercy, I received them with kindness, I conferred 
on them additional honors, and I drew the pen of ob- 
livion over their evil actions ; and I treated them in 
such sort, that, if suspicion remained in their hearts, 
it was plucked out entirely. 

" Seventhly. I selected out, and treated with esteem 
and veneration, the posterity of the Prophet, and the 
theologians, and the teachers of the true faith, and 
the i-.hilosophers, and the historians. And I loved men 
of courage ai.d valor ; for God Almighty loveth the 
brave. And I associated with good and learned men ; 
and I gained their affections, and I entreated their sup- 
port, and I sought success from their holy prayers. 
And I loved the dervishes and the poor ; and I op- 
pressed them not, neither did 1 exclude them from 
my favor. And I permitted not the evil and the ma- 

4v :' 








levolent to entfer into my council ; and I acted not by 
their advice ; and I listened not to their insinuations 
to the prejudice of others. 

" Eighthly. I acted with resolution ; and on what- 
ever undertaking I resolved, I made that undertaking 
the only object of my attention ; and I withdrew not 
my hand from that enterprise, until I had brought it 
to a conclusion. And I acted according to that which 
I said. And I dealt not with taverity towards any 
one, and I was not oppressive in any of my actions ; 
that God Almighty might not deal severely towards 
me, nor render my own actions oppressive unto me. 

" And I inquired of learned men into the laws and 
regulations of ancient princes, from the days of Adam 
to those of the Prophet, and from the days of the 
Prophet down to this time. And I weighed their in- 
stitutions and their actions and their opinions, one 
by one. And from their approved manners and their 
good qualities I selected models. And I inquired in- 
to the causes of the subversion of their power, and I 
shunned those actions which tend to the destruction 
and overthrow of regal authority. And from cruelty 
and from oppression, which are the destroyers of pos- 
terity and the bringers of famine and of plagues, I 
found it was good to abstain. 

" Ninthly. The situation of my people was known 
unto me. And those who were great among them I 
considered as my bretliren ; and I regarded the poor 
as my children. And I made myself acquainted with 
the tempers and the dispositions of the people of 
every country and of every city. And I contracted 
intimacies with the citizens and the chiefs and the 
nobles ; and I appointed over them governors adapt- 
ed to their manners and their dispositions and their 


wishes. And I knew the circumstauces of the inhab- 
itants of every province. And in every kingdom I 
appointed writers of intelligence, men of truth and 
integrity, that they might scud me information of the 
conduct and the behavior and the actions and the 
manners of the troops and of the inhabitants, and oL 
every occurrence that might come to pass amongst 
them And if I discovered aught contrary to theu 
information, I inflicted punishment on the intelligen- 
cer- and every circumstance of cruelty and oppres- 
sion in the governors and in the troops and in the m- 
habitants, which reached my ears, I chastised agree- 
ably to justice and <■ ,uity. 

" TentUy. Whatever tribe, and whatever horde, 
whether Toork, or Taucheek, or Arrub, or Ajjum, 
came in unto me, I received their chiefs with dis- 
tinction and respect, and their followers I honored 
according to their degrees and their stations ; and to 
the good among them I did good, and the evil I de- 
livered over to their evil actions. 

« And whoever attached himself unto me, I forgot 
not the merit of his attachment, and I acted towards 
him with kindness and generosity ; and whoever had 
rendered mo services I repaid the value of those ser- 
vices unto him. And whoever had been my enemy, 
and was ashamed thereof, and, flying to me for pro- 
tection, humbled himself before me, I forgot his en- 
mity, and I purchased him with liberality and kind- 
ness. , , • e e ^ 
"In such manner Share Behraum, the chief of a 

tribe, was along with me. And he left me ai the 
hour of action, and he united with the enemy, and 
he drew forth his sword against me. And at length 
my salt, which he had eaten, seized upon him; and 







f •« 


' i 

he again fled to me for refuge, and humbled him- 
self before me. As he was a man of illustrious de- 
scent, and of bravery, and of experience, I covered 
my eyes from his evil actions ; and I magnified him, 
and I exalted him to a superior rank, and I par- 
doned his disloyalty in consideration of his valor. 

^'■Eleventhly. My children, and my relations, and 
my associates, and my neighbors, and such as had 
been connected with me, all these I distinguished 
in the days of my fortune and prosperity, and I paid 
unto them their due. And with respect to my fam- 
ily, I rent not asunder the bands of consanguinity 
and mercy ; and I issued not commands to slay them, 
or to bind them with chains. 

" And I dealt with every man, whatever the judg- 
ment I had formed of him, according to my own 
opinion of his worth. As I had seen much of pros- 
perity and adversity, and had acquired knowledge 
and experience, I conducted myself with caution and 
with policy towards my friends and towards my ene- 

" Twelfthly. Soldiers, whether associates or adver- 
saries, I held in esteem, — those who sell their per- 
manent happiness to perishable honor, and throw 
themselves into the field of slaughter and battle, and 
hazard their lives in the hour of danger. 

" And the man who drew his sword on the side 
of my enemy, and committed hostilities against 
me, and preserved his fidelity to his master, him I 
greatly honored ; and when such a man came un- 
to me, knowing his worth, I classed him with my 
faithful associates; and I respected and valued his 
fidelity and his attachment. 

*' And the soldier who forgot his duty and hia 





honor, and in the hour of action turned his face 
from his master, and came in unto me, I considered 
as the most detestable of men. 

" And in the war between Touttummish Khaun, 
his emirs forgot their duty to Touktummish, who 
was their master and my foe, and sent proposals and 
wrote letters unto me. And I uttered execrations 
upon them, because, unmindful of that which they 
owed to their lord, they had thrown aside their hon- 
or and their duty, and came in unto me. I said 
unto myself, *What fidelity have they observed to 
their liege lord? what fidelity will they show unto 


"And, behold, it was known unto me by expe- 
rience, that every empire which is not established 
in morality and religion, nor strengthened by regu- 
lations and laws, from that empire all order, gran- 
deur, and power shall pass away. And that empire 
may be likened unto a naked man, who, when ex- 
posed to view, commandeth the eye of modesty to 
be covered ; and it is like unto a house which hath 
neither roof nor gates nor defences, into which who- 
ever willeth may enter unmolested. 

» Therefore I established the foundation of my 
empire on the morality and the religion of Islaum ; 
and by regulations and laws I gave it stability. And 
by laws and by regulations I executed every busi- 
ness and every transaction that came before me in 
the course of my government." 

I need not read any further, or I might show 
your Lordships the noble principles, the grand, bold, 
and manly maxims, the resolution to abstain from 
oppression himself, "nd to crush it in the govern- 



'It '• 


ore under him, to be found in this book, which Mr. 
Hastings has thought proper to resort to as con- 
taining what ho calls arbitrary principles. 

But it is not in this instance only that I must 
do justice to the East. I assert that their morality 
is equal to ours, in whatever regards the duties of 
governore, fathers, and superiore; and I challenge 
the world to show in any modern European book 
more true morality and wisdom tLan is to be found 
in the writings of Asiatic men in high trust, and 
who have been counsellore to princes. If this be 
the tnie morality of Asia, as I affirm and can prove 
that it is, the plea founded on Mr. Hastings's geo- 
graphical morality is annihilated. 

I little regard the theories of travellers, where 
they do not relate the facts on which they are 
founded. I have two instances of facts attested by 
Tavernier, a traveller of power and consequence, 
which are very material to be mentioned here, be- 
cause they Lhow that in some of the instances re- 
corded, in which the princes of the country have 
used any of those cruel and barbarous executions 
which make us execrate -hem, it has been upon 
governors who have abused their trust, — and that 
this very Oriental authority to which Mr. Hastings 
appeals would have condemned him to a dreadful 
punishment. I thank God, and I say it from m> 
heart, that even for his enormous offences there 
neither is nor can be anything like such punish- 
ments. God forbid that we should not as much 
detest out-of-the-way, mad, furious, and unequal pun- 
ishments as we detest enormous and abominable 
crimes! because a severe and cruel penalty for a 
crime of a light nature is as bad and iniquitous as 



thP crime which it pretends to punish. As the in- 
stances I aUudo to are curious, and as they go to 
the principles of Mr. Hastings's defence, I shall 
beg to quote them. 

The first is upon a governor who did what Mr. 
Hastings says he has a power delegated to him to do : 
he levied a tax without the consent of his master. 
«' Some years after my departure from Com," says 
Tavernier, " the governor had, of his own accord, 
and without any communication with the king, laid 
a small impost upon every pannier of fruit brought 
into the city, for the purpose of making some neces- 
sary reparations in the walls and bridges of the town. 
It was towards the end of the year 16S2 that the 
event I am going to relate happened. The king, 
being informed of the impost which the governor 
had laid upon the fruit, ordered him to be brought 
in chains to court. The king ordered him to bo ex- 
posed to the people at one of the gates of the palace ; 
then he commanded the son to pluck oflf the raus- 
tachios of his father, to cut oflf his nose and ears, to 
put out his eyes, and then cut oflF his head. The 
king then told the son to go and take possession of 
the government of his father, saying. See that you 
govern better than this deceased dog, or thy doom shall 
be a death more exquisitely tormenting." 

My Lords, you are struck with horror, I am struck 
with horror, at this punishment. I do not relate it 
to approve of such a barbarous act, but to prove to 
your Lordships, that, whatever power the princes of 
that country have, they are jealous of it to such a 
degree, that, if anj of their governors slioiiU levy 
a tax, even the most insignificant, and for the best 
purposes, he meets with a cruel puuislimcut. I do 



in r 

not justify the punishment ; but the severity of it 
shows how little of their power the princes of that 
country mean to delegate to their servants, the whole 
of which the gentleman at your bar says was delegat- 
ed to him. 

There is another case, a very strong one, and that 
is the case of presents, which I understand is a cus- 
tom admitted throughout Asia in all their govern- 
ments. It was of « T>erson w'lo was raised to a high 
office ; no business was suffered to come JHjfore him 
without a previous present. "One morning, the 
king being at this time on a hunting party, the nazar 
came to the tent of the king, but was denied entrance 
by the meter, or master of the wardrobe. About the 
same time the king came forth, and, seeing the aazar, 
commanded his officers to take off the bonnet from 
the head of that dog that took gifts from his peo- 
ple, and that he should sit three days bareheaded in 
the heat of the sun, and as many nights in the air. 
Afterwards he caused him to be chained about the 
neck and arms, and condemned him to perpetual 
imprisonment, with a mamoudy a day for his main- 
tenance; but he died for grief within eight days 
after he was put in prison." 

Do I mean, by reading this to your Lordships, to 
express or intimate an approbation either of the cru- 
elty of the punishment or of the coarse barbarism of 
the language? Neither one nor the other. I pro- 
duce it to your Lordships to prove to you, from this 
dreadful example, the horror which that government 
felt, when any person subject to it assumed to him- 
self a privilege to receive presents. The cruelty and 
severity exercised by these princes is not levelled at 
the poor unfortunate people who complain at their 

iM wua i 




gates, but, to use their own barbarous expression, 
to dogt that impote taxet and take pre$ent$. God for- 
bid I should use tliat language ! The people, when 
they complain, are not called dogs and sent away, 
but the governors, who do these things against the 
people: they are called dogs, and treated in that 
cruel manner. I quote them to show that no goT- 
eruors in the East, upon any principle of their con- 
stitution or any good practice of their government, 
can lay arbitrary imposts or receive presents. When 
they esoapfj, it is probably by bribery, by corruption, 
by creating factions for themselves in the seraglio, in 
the country, in the army, in the divan. But how 
they escape such punishments is not my business to 
inquire ; it is enough for me that the constitution 
disavows them, that the princes of the country dis- 
avow them, — that they revile them with the most 
horrible expressions, and inflict dreadful punish- 
ments on them, when they are called to answei' for 
these offences. 

Thus much concerning the Mahomedan laws of 
Asia. That the people of Asia have no laws, rights, 
or liberty, it. a doctrine that wickedly is to be dis- 
seminated through this country. But I again assert, 
every Muhomedan government is, by its principles, 
a government of law. 

I shall now state, from what is known of the gov- 
ernment of India, that it does not and cannot dele- 
gate, as Mr. Hastings has frequently declared, the 
whole of its powers and authority to him. If they 
are absolute, as they must be in the s. preme power, 
they ought to be arbitrary in none ; they were, how- 
ever, never absolute in any of their subordinate parts, 
and I will prove it by the known provincial coustitu- 





tions of Hindostan, which are all Mahomedan, the 
laws of which are as clear, as explicit, and as learned 
as ours. 

The first foundation of their law is the Koran. 
The next part is the Fetwdh, or adjudged cases by 
proper authority, well known there. The next, the 
written interpretations of the principles of jurispru- 
dence: and their books are as numerous upon the 
principles of jurisprudence as in any country in Eu- 
rope. The next part of their law is what they call 
the Kanon, — that is, a positive rule equivalent to acts 
of Parliament, the law of the several powers of the 
country, taken from the Greek word Kavav, which 
was brought into their country, and is well known. 
The next is the Eawaj-ul-Mulk, or common law and 
custom of the kingdom, equivalent to our common 
law. Therefore they have laws from more sources 
than we have, exactly in the same order, grounded 
upon the same authority, fundamentally fixed to be 
administered to the people upon these principles. 

The next thing is to show that in India there is 
a partition of the powers of the government, which 
proves that there is no absolute power delegated. 

In every province the first person is the Subahdar 
or Nazim, or Viceroy: he has the power of the sword, 
and the administration of criminal justice only. Then 
there is the Dewan, or High Steward : he has the rev- 
enue and all exchequer causes under him, to be gov- 
erned according to the law and custom and institu- 
tions of the kingdom. The law of inheritances, suc- 
cessions, and everything that relates to them, is under 
the Cadi, in whose court these matters are tried. 
But this, too, was subdivided. The Cadi could not 
judge, but by the advice of his assessors. Properly 



in the Mahomedan law there is uo appeal, only a re- 
moval of the cause ; but when there is no judgment, 
as none can be when the court is not unanimous, it 
goes to the general assembly of all the men of the 
law. There are, I will venture to say, other divisions 
and subdivisions ; for there are the Kanongoes, who 
hold their places for life, to be the conservators of the 
canons, customs, and good usages of the country : all 
these, as well as the Cadi and the Mufti, hold their 
places and situations, not durmg the wanton pleasure 
of the prince, but on permanent and fixed terms for 
life. All these powers of magistracy, revenue, and 
law are all different, consequently not delegated m 
the whole to any one person. 

This is the provincial constitution, and these the 
laws of Bengal; which proves, if there were no other 
proof, by the division of the functions and authorities, 
that the supreme power of the state in the Mogul 
empire did by no means delegate to any of its offi- 
cers the supreme power in its fulness. Whether or 
no we have delegated to Mr. Hastings the supreme 
power of King and ParUament, that he should act 
with the plenitude of authority of the British legisla- 
ture, you are to judge. 

Mr. Hastings has no refuge here. Let him run 
from law to law ; let him fly from the common law 
and the sacred institutions of the country in which 
he was born ; let him fly from acts of Parliament, 
from which his power originated ; let him plead his 
ignorance of them, or fly in the face of them. Will 
he fly to the Mahomedan law ? That condemns him. 
Will he fly to the high magistracy of Asia to defend 
taking of presents ? Padishah and the Sultan would 
condemn him to a cruel death. WUl ho fly to the 




, I 




Sophis, to the laws of Persia, or to the practice of 
those monarchs ? I cannot utter the pains, the tor- 
tures, that would be inflicted on him, if he were to 
govern there as he has done in a British province. 
Let him fly where he will, from law to law ; law, I 
thank God, meets him everywhere, and enforced, too, 
by the practice of the most impious tyrants, which he 
quotes as if it would justify his conduct. I would as 
willingly have him tried by the law of the Koran, or 
the Institutes of Tamerlane, as on the common law 
or statute law of this kingdom. 

The next question is, whether the Gentoo laws 
justify arbitrary power : and if he finds any sanctua- 
ry there, let him take it, with the cow in the pagoda. 
The Gentoos have a law which positively proscribes 
in magistrates any idea of will, — a law with which, 
or rather with extracts of it, that gentleman himself 
has furnished us. These people in many points are 
governed by their own ancient written law, called the 
Shaater. Its interpreters and judges are the Pundita. 
This law is comprehensive, extending to all the con- 
cerns of life, affording principles and maxims and le 
gal theories applicable to all cases, drawn from the 
sources of natural equity, modified by their institu- 
tions, full of refinement and subtilty of distinction 
equal to that of any other law, and has the grand test 
of all law, that, wherever it has prevailed, the country 
has been populous, flourishing, and happy. 

Upon the whole, then, follow him where you will, 
let him have Eastern or Western law, you find every- 
where arbitrary power and peculation of governors 
proscribed and horribly punished, — more so than I 
should ever wish to punish any, the most guilty, 
human creature. And if this be the case, as I hope 



and trust it has been proved to your Lordships, that 
there is law in these countries, that there is no delega- 
tion of power which exempts a governor from the law, 
then I say at any rate a British governor is to answer 
for his conduct, and cannot be justified by wicked 
examples and profligate practices. 

But another thing which he says is, that he was left 
to himself, to govern himself by his own practice : 
that is to say, when he had taken one bribe, he might 
take another ; when he had robbed one man of his 
property, he might rob another ; when he had impris- 
oned one man arbitrarily, and extorted money from 
him, he might do so by another. He resorts at first 
to the practice of barbarians and usurpers ; at last he 
comes to his own. Now, if your Lordships will try 
him by such maxims and principles, he is certainly 
clear: for there is no manner of doubt that there is 
nothing he has practised once which he has not prac- 
tised again ; and then the repetition of crimes be- 
comes the means of his indemnity. 

The next pleas he urges are not so much in bar of 
the impeachment as in extenuation. The first are to 
be laid by as claims to be made on motion for arrest 
of judgment, the others as an extenuation or mitiga- 
tion of his fine. He says, and with a kind of triumph, 
" The ministry of this country have great legal assist- 
ance,— commercial lights of the greatest commer- 
cial city in the world,— the greatest generals and 
officers to guide and direct them in military affairs: 
whereas I, poor man, was sent almost a school-boy 
from England, or at least little better, — sent to find 
my way in that new world as well as I could. I had 
no men of the law, no legal assistance, to supply my 
deficiencies." At SpUngem habehas domi. Had ho 




not the chief-justice, the tamed and domesticated 
chief-justice, who waited ou him like a familiar spirit, 
whom he takes from province to province, his aman- 
uensis at home, his postilion and riding express 

abrc ad ? 

Such a declaration would in some measure suit 
persons who had acted much otherwise than Mr. 
Hastings. When a man pleads ignorance in justifi- 
cation of his conduct, it ought to be an humble, mod- 
est, unpresuming ignorance, an ignorance which may 
have made him lax and timid in the exercise of his 
duty; but an assuming, rash, presumptuous, con- 
fident, daring, desperate, and disobedient ignorance 
heightens every crime that it accompanies., Mr. 
Hastings, if through ignorunce he le't some of the 
Company's orders unexecuted, because he did not 
understand them, might well say, " I was an ignorant 
man, and these things were above my capacity." But 
when he understands them, and when he declares he 
will not obey them, positively and dogmatically,— 
when he says, as he has said, and we shall prove it, 
that he never succeeds better than when he acts in an ut- 
ter defiance of those orders, and sets at nought the laws 
of his country,— I believe this will not be thought the 
language of an ignorant man. But I beg your Lord- 
ships' pardon : it is ihe language ^f an ignorant man ; 
for no man who was not full of a bold, determined, 
profligate ignorance could ever think of such a system 
of defence. He quitted Westminster School almost 
a boy. We have reason to regret that he did not fin- 
ish his education m that noble seminary, which has 
given so many luminaries to the Church and orna- 
ments to the State. Greatly it is to be lamented that 
he did not go to those Universities where arbitrary 

. 4' ^' 



power will I hops nevci be heard of, but tho true 
principles of religion, of liberty, and law will ever be 
inculcated, instead of studying in the school of Cos- 
sim Ali Khan. 

If he had lived with us, he would have quoted 
the example of Cicero in his government, he would 
have quoted several of the sacred and holy prophets, 
and made them his example. His want of learning, 
profane as well as sacred, reduces him to the necessi- 
ty of appealing to every name and authority of bar- 
bonsm, tyranny, and usurpation that are to be found ; 
and from these he says, " From the practice of one 
part of Asia or other I have taken my rule." But 
your Lordships will show him that in Asia as well as 
in Europe the same law of nations prevails, the same 
principles are continually resorted to, and the samo 
maxims sacredly held and strenuously maintained, 
and, however disobeyed, no man suffers from the 
breach of them who does not know how and where to 
complain of that breach,— that Asia is enlightened 
in that respect as well as Europe ; but if it were total- 
ly blinded, that England would send out governors to 
teach them better, and that he must justify himself to 
the piety, the truth, the faith of England, and not by 
having recourse to the crimes and criminals of other 
countries, to the barbarous tyranny of Asia, or any 
other part of the world. 

I will go further with Mr. Hastings, and admit, 
that, if there be a boy in the fourth form of Westmin- 
ster School, or any school in England, who does not 
know, when these articles are read to him, that he 
has been guilty of gross and enormous crimes, he 
may have the shelter of his present plea, as far as it 
will serve him. There are none of us, thank God, so 



'I '1 

uninstruoted, who have learned our catechisms or 
the first elements of Christianity, who do not know 
that such conduct is not to be justified, and least of 
all by examples. 

There is another topic he takes up more seriously, 
and as a general rebutter to the charge. Says he, 
" After a great many of these practices with which I 
am charged. Parliament appointed me to my trust, 
and consequently has acquitted me." — Has it, my 
Lords? I am bold to say that the Commons are 
wholly guiltless of this charge. I will admit, if Parlia- 
ment, on a full state of his offences before them, and 
full examination of those offences, had appointed him 
to the government, that then the people of India and 
England would have just reason to exclaim against 
60 flagitious a proceeding. A sense of propriety and 
decorum might have restrained us from prosecuting. 
They might have been restrained by some sort of de- 
corum from pursuing him criminally. But the Com- 
mons stand before your Lordships without shame. 
First, in their name we solemnly assure your Lord- 
ships that we had not in our Parliamentary capacity 
(and most of us, myself I can say surely, heard very 
little, and that in confused rumors) the slightest 
knowledge of any one of the acts charged upon this 
criminal at either of the times of his being appointed 
to office, and that we were not guilty of the nefarious 
act of collusion and flagitious breach of trust with 
which he presumes obliquely to charge us ; but fronu 
the moment we knew them, we never ceased to con- 
demn them by reports, by votes, by resolutions, and 
that we admonished and declared it to be the duty of 
the Court of Directors to take measures for his recall, 
and when frustrated in the way known to that court 



we then proceeded to an inquiry. Your Lordships 
know whether you were better informed. We are, 
therefore, neither guilty of the precedent crime of 
colluding with the criminal, nor the subsequent inde- 
corum of prosecuting what we had virtually and prac- 
tically approved. 

Secondly, several of his worst crimes have been 
committed since the last Parliamentary renewal of 
his trust, as appears by the dates in the charge. 

But I believe, my Lords, the judges— judges to 
others, grave and weighty counsellors and assistants 
to your Lordships — will not, c reference, assert to 
your Lordships, (which God fo bid, and we cannot 
conceive, or hardly state in argument, if but for ar- 
gument,) that, if one of the judges had received 
bribes before his appointment to an higher judiciary 
office, he would not still be open to prosecution. 

So far from admitting it as a plea in bar, we 
charge, and we hope your Lordships will find it an 
extreme aggravation of his offences, that no favors 
heaped upon him could make him grateful, no re- 
newed and repeated trusts could make him faithful 

and honest. 

We have now gone through most of the general 


But he is not responsible, as being thanked by the 
Court of Directors. He has had the thanks and ap- 
probation of the India Company for his services. — We 
know too weU here, I trust the world knows, and you 
will always assert, that a pardon from the crown is 
not pleadable here, that it cannot bar the impaach- 
ment of the Commons, — much less a pardon of the 
East T-idia Company, though it may involve them in 
guilt which might induce us to punish them for such 

it J I 





I ^ 


■ 1 n 
! . 

a pardon. If any corporation by collusion with crim- 
inals refuse to do their duty in coercing them, the 
magistrates are answerable. 

It is the use, virtue, and efficacy of Parliamentary 
judicial procedure, that it puts an end to this domin- 
ion of faction, intrigue, cabal, and clandestine intel- 
ligences. The acts of men are put to their proper 
test, and the works of darkness tried in the face of 
day, — not the corrupted opinions of others on them, 
but their own intrinsic merits. We charge it as his 
crime, that he bribed the Court of Directors to thank 
him for what they had condemned as breaches of his 


The East India Company, it is true, have thanked 
him. They ought not to have done it ; and it is a 
reflection upon their character that they did it. But 
the Directors praise him in the gross, after having 
condemLjd each act in detail. His actions are ally 
every one, censured one by one as they arise. I do 
not recollect any one transaction, few there are, I am 
sure, in the whole body of that succession of crimes 
now brought before you for your judgment, in which 
the India Company have not censured him. Nay, in 
one instance he pleads their censure in bar of this 
trial ;• for he says, "In that censure I have already 
received my punishment." If, for any other reasons, 
they come and say, " We thank you. Sir. for all your 
services," to that I answer. Yes; and J would thank 
him for his services, too, if I knew them. But I do 
not ; — perhaps they do. Let them thank him for 
those services. I am ordered to prosecute him for 
these crimes. Here, therefore, we are on a balance 
with the India Company; and your Lordships may 

• See Mr. Hastings's answer to the first chai^ge. 



perhaps think it some addition to his crimes, that 
he has found means to obtain the thanks of the India 
Company for the whole of his conduct, at the same 
time that their records are full of constant, uniform, 
particular censure and reprobation of every one of 
those acts for which he now stands accused. 

He says, there is the testimony of Indian princes 
in his favor. But do we not know how seals are ob- 
tained in that country? Do we not know how those 
princes are imposed upon ? Do we not know the sub- 
jection and thraldom in which they are held, and 
that they are obliged to return thanks for the suffer- 
ings which they have felt ? I believe your Lordships 
will think that there is not, with regard to some of 
these princes, a more dreadful thing that can be said 
of them than that he has obtained their thanks. 

I understand he has obtained the thanks of the 
miserable Princesses of Oude, whom he has cruelly 
imprisoned, whose treasure he has seized, and whose 
eunuchs he has tortured.* They thank him for going 
away ; they thank him for leaving them the smallest 
trifle of their subsistence ; and I venture to say, if 
he wanted a hundred more panegyrics, provided he 
never came again among them, he might have them. 
I understand that Mahdajee Sindia has made his 
panegyric, too. Mahdajee Sindia has not made his 
panegyric for nothing ; for, if your Lordships will 
suffer him to enter into such a justification, wo shall 
prove that he has sacrificed the dignity of this coun- 
try and the interests of all its allies to that prince. 
We appear here neither with panegyric nor with 
satire ; it is for substantial crimes we bring him be- 

• A Latin sentence, which was quoted here, is omitted in the MS. 
of the short-hand writer. — Ep. 


M ' / .u 



fore you, and amongst others for cruelly using per- 
sons of the highest rank and consideration in India ; 
and when we prove he has cruelly injured them, you 
will think the panegyrics either gross forgeries or 
most miserable aggravations of his offences, since 
they show the abject and dreadful state into which ho 
has driven those people. For let it be proved that 1 
have cruelly robbed and maltreated any persons, if I 
produce a certificate from them of my good behavior, 
would it not be a corroborative proof of the terror 
into which those persons are thrown by my miscon- 

My Lords, these are, I believe, the general grounds 
of our charge. I have now closed completely, and I 
liope to your Lordships' satisfaction, the whole body 
of history of which I wished to put your Lordships in 
possession. I do not mean that many of your Lord- 
ships may not have knowi it more perfectly by your 
own previous inquiries ; but, bringing to your remem- 
brance the state of the circumstances of the persons 
with whom he acted, the persons and power he has 
abused, I have gone to the principles he maintains, 
the precedents he quotes, the laws and authorities 
which he refuses to abide by, and those on which he 
relies ; and at last I have refuted all those pleas in 
bar on which he depends, and for the effect of which 
he presumes on the indulgence and patience of this 
country, or on the corruption of some persons in it. 
And here I close what I had to say upon this subject, 
— wishing and hoping, that, when I open before your 
Lordships the case more particularly, so as to state 
rather a plan of the proceeding than the direct proof 
of the crimes, your Lordships will hear me with the 




same goodness and indulgence I have hitherto expe- 
rienced,— that 70U will consider, if I have detained 
you long, it was not with a view of exhausting my 
own strength, or putting ^our patience to too severe a 
trial, but fVom the sense I feel that it is the most dif- 
ficult and the most complicated cause that was ever 
brought before any human tribunal. Therefore I was 
resolved to bring the whole substantially before you. 
And now, if your Lordships will permit me, I will 
state the method of my future proceeding, and the 
future proceeding of the gentlemen assisting me. 

I mean first to bring before you the crimes as they 
are classed, and are of the same species and genus, 
and how they mutually arose from one another. I 
shall first show that Mr. Hastings's crimes had root 
in that which is the root of all evil, I mean avarice ; 
that avarice and rapacity were the groundwork and 
foundation of all his other vicious system ; that he 
showed it in setting to sale the native government 
of the country, in settmg to sale the whole landed 
interest of the country, in setting to sale the British 
government and his own fellow-servants, to the basest 
and wickedest of mankind. 

I shall then show your Lordships, that, when, in 
consequence of such a body of corruption and pecula- 
tion, he justly dreaded the indignation of his country 
and the vengeance of its laws, in order to raise him- 
self a faction embodied by the same guilt and reward- 
ed in the same manner, he has, with a most abanuonod 
profusion, thrown away the revenues of the country 
to form such a faction here. 

I shall next show your Lordships, that, having ex- 
hausted the resources of the Company, and brought 
it t . extreme difficulties within, he has looked to his 




• .1^ 

i ; i ; :i 


I 'i 



external resources, as he calls them ; he has gone up 
into the country. I will show that he has plundered, 
or attempted to plunder, every person dependent upon, 
connected, or allied with this country. 

We shall afterwards show what infinite mischief has 
followed in the case of Benares, upon which he first 
laid his hands ; next, in the case of the Begums of 

Wo shall then lay before you the profligate system 
by which he endeavored to oppress that country : first 
by Residents ; next by spies under the name of British 
Agents ; and lastly, that, pursuing his way up to the 
mountains, he has found out one miserable chief, 
whoso crimes were the prosperity of his country, — 
that him he endeavored to torture and destroy, — I do 
not mean in his body, but by exhausting the treasures 
wliicli he kept for the benefit of his people. 

In short, having shown your Lordships that no 
man who is in his power is safe from his arbitrary 
will, — that no man, within or without, friend, ally, 
rival, has been safe from him, — having brought it to 
this point, if I am not able in my own person imme- 
diately to go up into the country and show the rami- 
fications of the system, ( I hope and trust I shall be 
spared to take my part in pursuing him through both,) 
if I am not, I shall go at least to the root of it, and 
some other gentleman, with a thousand times more 
ability than I possess, will take up each separate part 
in its proper order. And I believe it is proposed by 
the managers that one of them shall as soon as possi- 
ble begin with the aflTair of Benares. 

The point I now mean first to bring before your 
Lordships is the corruption of Mr. Hastings, his sys- 
tem of peculation and bribery, and to show your Lord- 




ships tho horrible cousoquonces which resulted from 
it : for, at first sight, bribery aud peculation do not 
seem to bo so horrid a matter ; they may seem to be 
only tho transferring a little money out of ono pocket 
into another ; but I shall show that by such a system 
of bribery tho country is undone. 

I shall inform your Lordships in the best maimer I 
can, and afterwards submit tho whole, as I do with a 
cheerful heart and with an ettsy and assured security, 
to that justice which is the security for all tho other 
justice in the kingdom.